A body has been found near the Whiteoak Canyon trail at Shenandoah National Park, Virginia State Police confirmed Thursday.
According to state police, search efforts were suspended after the discovery of female remains around 2 p.m. in a remote location more than a mile from the Whiteoak Canyon parking lot where Nicole Mittendorff’s car was found Saturday.
The discovery of the body comes six days after authorities began searching for the missing Fairfax County firefighter.
The 37-year-old Woodbridge woman was reported missing on Friday when she didn’t show up to work at Station 32. Her car was found Saturday in a parking lot near Whiteoak Falls trail in Shenandoah.
Mittendorf, 31, was reported missing Friday, two days after she called out of workand her family last heard from her, according to Fairfax County Fire and Rescue.
“Our hearts are broken,” reads a post on the Find Nicole Facebook page her family created. “We thank you for your support and ask that you keep our family in your prayers in the challenging days ahead.”
Officials did not immediately say whether the body was that of Nicole K. Mittendorff, 31, of Woodbridge. But they said in a press release that the remains were discovered in a remote location more than a mile from the Whiteoak Canyon Trail parking area where Mittendorff’s Mini Cooper was left.
Virginia State Police and National Park Service personnel discovered the body around 2 p.m. about 330 yards from the trail in treacherous rocky terrain, the release said. Investigators are still processing the scene.