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Officials recover, identify man's body

Deputies in San Juan County have recovered the remains of a man missing for more than a year.

The family of J.K. Hintze, Russelville, Ark., reported him missing on Aug. 3, 1996. Hintze, 37, was supposed to meet his family at the Halls Crossing Marina on Lake Powell.A hiker from Colorado discovered some human bones in a flat-brushy area about three miles east of Halls Crossing. The hikers reported it Oct. 14 and deputies recovered the rest of the remains, said San Juan County Sheriff's Lt. Monte Dalton.

A medical examiner matched the teeth to Hintze through dental records, Dalton said.

"It's not the ending we hoped for but at least this brings some closure," said the man's wife, Ingred Hintze. "It's been a long hard year."

Hintze's family was supposed to meet him where the ferry lands near Halls Crossing, she said. She and some other relatives waited until about 6 p.m. and left to set up camp for the night. They thought he decided to wait until the next day to arrive. He apparently got there about 7 p.m.

He may have gotten lost while searching for the family on foot, Ingred Hintze said. He had high-blood pressure and asthma and either condition could have caused him to break down.

Police found Hintze's car in the area and a search began. The Civil Air Patrol and search and rescue teams looked for Hintze on the ground. Divers combed the lake bottoms. The search was called off after two weeks.

Police do not believe he was murdered. The cause of death remains a mystery. An autopsy wasn't possible because of the condition of the body, Dalton said.

Hintze was born in Ogden. He grew up in Utah and later moved to Arkansas. He was in Utah visiting relatives with his family when he disappeared.

Ingred Hintze described him as a "good husband and father." He worked as a pipe fitter and welder and had five children.

Funeral services will be on Thursday at Larkin Sunset Gardens.