By Joshua Benton
Blade Staff Writer
CHAPEL HILL, N.C. — The skeletal remains that were found in a rural North Carolina county Wednesday are definitely those of Peggy Carr, the Toledo native who disappeared in April, the state medical examiner’s office here has determined.
An autopsy yesterday morning made the identification, Bladen County Sheriff Steve Bunn said.
The discovery will help give closure to many of the friends and family members who have been searching for Ms. Carr since her disappearance.
“It’s not the same as seeing her or holding her, but at least we know we found her,” said Penny Carr Britton, Ms. Carr’s mother.
The remains were discovered in a thick, brushy area near a dirt road in Bladen County, about 30 miles northwest of Wilmington, N.C., where Ms. Carr, 32, lived.
She had been last seen running errands on April 22, in preparation for her wedding, which would have been in September. She left a note for her fiance, Charlie Rivenbark, saying: “Be back soon.”
But police believe two men – Bem Kayin Holloway, 21, of Raleigh, N.C., and Curtis Antwan Cobbs, 19, of Whiteville, N.C. – killed her to use her Geo Tracker as a getaway vehicle in a gas station robbery. The two men have been charged with murdering Ms. Carr and a clerk at the gas station they allegedly robbed in Lumberton, N.C.
Mrs. Britton and three other family members went to North Carolina Wednesday night after authorities there said they might have found the body.
Ms. Carr was a Central Catholic graduate who lived in West Toledo, on Claredale Road and Beaufort Avenue, all her life until moving to Wilmington two years ago.
A memorial service will be held in a North Carolina Catholic church tomorrow, and the family likely will return Monday to Ohio.
But the remains won’t return with them. Because of the difficulty performing an autopsy on skeletal remains, Mr. Bunn said, medical examiners have not yet been able to determine a cause of death.
In addition, each bone must be cataloged and photographed individually as part of the murder investigation. Mrs. Britton said the remains, which will be cremated in North Carolina, likely will not be ready for return to Ohio for more than a week.
Mrs. Britton thanked all in the Toledo area who have helped her family in the months of searching. “That’s been our strength, knowing that everyone has adopted Peggy and made her their concern,” she said.
The family plans to mark the spot where Ms. Carr’s remains were found, first with flowers, then a stone.