Body of missing Virginia firefighter Nicole Mittendorff found, suicide note recovered
Family and friends mourned Thursday when authorities discovered remains after an extensive six-day search for Fairfax County firefighter Nicole Mittendorff.
A spokeswoman for the National Park Service confirmed that search efforts were suspended after a body was found near White Oak Canyon trail, not far from where Mittendorff's car was parked. Friends and family had suspected that Mittendorff, an avid athlete, was running in the park.
Officials also revealed that a suicide note had been found in her car.
"The physical and digital evidence collected during the course of this investigation – to include a note recovered from her car – leads investigators to believe there was no foul play involved in her death," Virginia State police confirmed in a statement.
RELATED: Photos of Nicole
"Our hearts are broken," the 31-year-old's family said in a statement on Facebook. "We thank you for your support and ask that you keep our family in your prayers in the challenging days ahead."
The tragic news comes less than one week after she was reported missing. Her family and friends immediately became concerned when she failed to show up for work Friday, April 15.
The 31-year-old was last in contact with family members on Wednesday, April 13. After she was reported missing, her car, a Mini Cooper, was found parked in in the Shenandoah National Park.
Fire Chief Richard Bowers told reporters during a press conference Wednesday that Mittendorff called out sick from work before her disappearance.