Deputies find body of missing St. David woman, Mary Black
Taylor Higgins, Rikki Mitchell
TUCSON (KGUN9-TV) - Pima County deputies found the body of a woman who went missing almost two weeks ago.
Deputy Tracy Suitt with the Pima County Sheriff's Department says deputies located the body of 86-year-old Mary Black, who went missing November 24 from the St. David area of Cochise County.
Cochise County Sheriff's Officials say Mary Black drove away from her St. David home, with no food, water or money.
Last weekend, a clue turned up. A hunter found her 1991 Ford Explorer on Sunland Gin Road, but still no sign of Mary.
Crews found footprints leading away from the car but could not say who they belonged to.
On Sunday, Cochise County Sheriff's Office Search and Rescue members along with Pinal County Search and Rescue and Pima County Search and Rescue teams deployed in the area where the vehicle was located, south of Arizona City, according to Carol Capas with the Cochise County Sheriff's Department.
The Search Teams were organized and utilizing canines they worked the area from the vehicle out and discovered Ms. Blacks' body in a brushy area, approximately one mile southwest.
For the first couple of hours into the search, teams were finding trash and debris in the desert. But any piece of information helped.
"We're looking at anything and everything," says Sgt. Jason Dowdy, supervisor for the Pima County Sheriff's Department Search and Rescue.
Teams on foot, on horseback and on ATV's searched the area.
The Pinal County Sheriff's Department Air Unit circled above, letting ground teams know of any items.
Residents say the area is known as a desert dumping grounds.
"There's actually people that use to ride around and all they did is look for stolen vehicles, call a tow company and then get a reward on them. That's how many vehicles use to be out here on a regular basis," Blue Sanders, who lives nearby, told 9OYS.
During the search, Bob Meredith posted fliers at truck stops and spoke with anyone who might have seen her.
Meredith says he's known the Black family for more than 50 years, when Mary was involved in rodeos.
He says he likes to remember Mary wearing huge dresses and always followed by children.
"The kids all loved her at them rodeos," he said. "Every time I looked up, here she'd come walking, and she'd always have five, six kids hanging on her."
Sgt. Dowdy says the purpose of Sunday's search was to find Black, but there are still unanswered questions.