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Son of missing woman thanks scout troop that found her body

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Posted at 10:18 PM, Oct 13, 2013
and last updated 2013-10-14 00:18:36-04

TOOELE COUNTY, Utah -- A day after Boy Scouts discovered the body of a missing Tooele County woman, her son is saying thank you.

Doug Ashby has never met Xander Hammert, but he said he is grateful the 11-year-old and other scouts found Jane Ashby’s car Saturday while hiking on a road just west of the Oquirrh Mountains.

"We needed closure,” he said. “We needed that, and now we have it.”

Jane Ashby's husband died in December. The 62-year-old Tooele woman went missing July 31.

"She was such a generous loving mother and grandmother, and depression got to her," Ashby said.

He said he thinks his mom's death was intentional. The family posted a Facebook page to find Jane and a flyer at the mouth of Middle Canyon, but no one, including cops, spotted anything until Saturday, when a Boy Scout saw something unusual near Butterfield Canyon Road.

“Someone else in the troop, while we were walking along that path, he spotted an engine fan and then I told the rest of the troop that we found the car,” Xander said.

Ashby's SUV plummeted about 1,000 feet down a hill.

"You could tell it went end-over-end as it went down the hill because the front and back end of it were really tore up," said scout leader Craig Lewis

The vehicle was barely noticeable near thick brush.  As the scouts opened the driver's side door,  ”A wallet with the driver’s license and some pictures and we also found a pistol for protection,” Hammert said.

Lewis said they investigated the area.

“Me and the other leader hiked up the hill a little further and found the body,” Lewis said.

Lewis said he thinks Jane Ashby was ejected. He said none of the scouts actually saw her body.

"That's good,” Ashby said. “That was one of my concerns, and my sister as well. We don't want anyone to be adversely affected by this.”

Lewis said he hopes their discovery brings peace.

“Hopefully we can put the family at ease knowing where she was at,” he said.

“We just have to thank everyone who helped and brought closure to the situation,” Ashby added.  "We can now move on with life and know where she's at and take care of those issues."