The body of missing Irish American grandmother Pat O’Hagan have been found in Vermont it was announced yesterday. The 78 year-old grandmother had disappeared from her home in Sheffield on September 10th according to Vermont State police. A friend raised the alarm after O’Hagan failed to show up for a rug hooking class she never missed.
Upon hearing about the elderly woman’s disappearance, the quiet town of Sheffield with a population of 700 people immediately sprung into action as volunteers helped police and FBI agents comb a 25-square-mile area. Scuba divers even checked the nearby quarry but despite an extensive search there was still no sign of the missing woman.
Earlier this week police announced that bird hunters had discovered a body in a wooded area. On Tuesday local police announced that the body that was discovered had been formally identified as Pat O’Hagan who was abducted from her home at the beginning of September.
Vermont State Police told reporters last Monday that bird hunters guided them to a remote area of woods in Wheellock where they had made the grim discovery. The forested area was ten miles away from O’Hagan’s home where she lived alone.
Police later announced that the death has been ruled a homicide, but they are not willing to disclose the cause of death until the results from additional toxicology tests are released in the coming weeks. Detectives were reluctant to give details regarding the cause of death but they said O’Hagan was "forcefully removed from her residence" .
An O’Hagan family statement expressed the true horror of the situation, “We are saddened by the news of our beloved mother, sister, grandmother and aunt, it is impossible to comprehend why someone would harm her.”
The grandmother of nine had moved to Vermont 15 years ago from Chelmsford Massachusetts. Widely known as an active member of the community, Pat O’Hagan had served as the president of the Sheffield Historical Society and also volunteered at many community events. She was also an avid kayaker.
Elenor Dole 61, who lives just down the street from O’Hagan told the Burlington Free Press that local residents are in shock. "We've all been running scared. We don't lock our doors around here. We don't lock our cars. I don't want to have to get a gun,"she said. She expressed her his dismay as to hwy someone would ever hurt Pat, "Why pick on this sweet old lady?"