Bones of Joliet native who disappeared in ’11 recovered
By Frank Abderholden email@example.com November 15, 2012 6:20PM
Kenneth J. Kile Jr
Updated: December 19, 2012 1:04PM
The bones of a 43-year-old Gulf War veteran and Joliet native who went missing in a swampy area in the north suburbs more than a year ago were found because this summer’s drought made the area accessible, police said.
Island Lake police announced Thursday the confirmation of the identity of the victim, Kenneth Kile Jr., who was originally from Joliet, after the McHenry County Coroner’s Office was able to match X-rays and dental records available through the Hines Veterans Hospital.
Island Lake Detective Barry Huedepohl said Kile had a history of drug use.
Authorities believe he wandered into the Cotton Creek wetlands, got stuck and died. There was no indication of foul play.
The body was identified Nov. 9, and police made the announcement Thursday after they were able to contact his family.
Kile was reported missing by a roommate in June 2011, who said he had last seen him heading into the Cotton Creek wetlands area about six months prior. He had not been seen since.
At the time, police using ATVs and tracking dogs attempted to search the area east of the Fox River on the border between Lake and McHenry counties, but the search was unsuccessful because the wet ground was unpassable.
Police contacted the coroner’s office in October to re-open the cold case because a spillway in the area had been dry since June due to the summer drought.
A large-scale exercise organized by the McHenry County Emergency Management Association was held Nov. 3 that included search-and-rescue teams from DuPage, Kane, LaSalle, Lake and McHenry counties, along with searchers from Naperville, Plainfield and the Midwest K-9 Emergency Response Team, along with Wauconda and Island Lake police.
Huedepohl said the Cotton Creek wetland/marsh area is normally under several inches of water but was now dry and passable by foot for the first time in many years.
Around 10:50 a.m., a police dog team specializing in cadaver tracking found Kile’s skeletal remains and other physical evidence in the marsh.