ST. JOSEPH/ PAYNESVILLE -- Earlier this Saturday morning unconfirmed reports surfaced about Jacob Wetterling's remains being found.

Shortly before 6:00 p.m. today the Stearns County Sheriff's Office confirmed that Wetterling's remains have been located.

As the news spread around town, residents of his hometown St. Joseph,  were left with no words.

Kay Lemke of St. Joseph, couldn't help but get teary–eyed as she recalled when Wetterling was first abducted. Although it has been 27 years, she says the news still continues to shake up the town.

"Tears came to my eyes, instantly again now. It would be such a relief for the family, for the town, for everyone says, Lemke"

For others this hit home. Harvey Pfannenstein, owner of St. Joe Meat Market, says his daughter went to school with Wetterling and knew him well.

"When it hits a community like this, everybody is affected by it. My daughter was the same age as him and knew him very well in school. Just completely devastating and it affects everybody says Pfannenstein"

However, the news did not just affect St. Joseph, but also the residents of Paynesville, where Daniel Heinrich lived. Heinrich was named a person of interest last October in regards to Wetterling's disappearance.

Dick Geers of Paynesville said he heard the news once he started setting up  for the town's farmer's market.

"My reaction is the family will finally have closure, but they will grieve all over again. It will open up the wounds says, Geers"

As the communities feel for the Wetterling's, all they can do for now is wait for answers.


Jacob Wetterling


Statement from the Jacob Wetterling Resource Center.