After going missing from her Airbnb while visiting the island, the body of a missing Indiana teacher has reportedly been discovered face down in a river in Puerto Rico.
According to Fox 59, Amanda Lynn Webster, 44, an art teacher at Indianapolis’ Thompson Crossing Elementary School, was reported missing by her Airbnb host on Wednesday.
A local police statement posted on Facebook in English states that the landlord became aware that Webster “failed to leave the home as agreed upon and left her belongings and a rented car on the property.”
Authorities in Naguabo issued a “Ashanti Alert” on Friday, requesting assistance in the woman’s disappearance. She was last seen at the Casa Parcha guest house, which is close to El Yunque National Park.
Authorities reported the gruesome finding of a body on Saturday; they did not identify it right away.
“A lifeless body, which could be that of a woman, was found this morning in the river in the Río Blanco neighborhood of the Camino Viejo Sector of Naguabo,” police said in a statement.
“The body was found face down floating in a rocky area of the river, so the Police CIC team, together with the Prosecutor’s Office and staff from the Forensic Institute, are working on the extraction and identification process,” cops said.
“At this stage it is not possible to identify the gender of the body or conclude whether it shows signs of violence,” the statement added.
But sources close to Webster’s family told Fox 59 that the person found was Webster.
“I’m just happy she was found and that her family, her students and the community and all her friends can have some form of closure even though it’s pretty earth-shattering,” Webster’s good friend Sharon Rickson told WTHR. “There’s hundreds if not thousands of lives she directly impacted. A lot of people are going to be feeling this loss.”
Webster also worked with special-education students at Franklin Township schools.
“She was such a force. She was such a positive force. You would feel her presence and her warmth immediately. She gave the best hugs,” Rickson told the outlet.
“She was very unique, happy-go-lucky, never met a stranger and absolutely beautiful radiant personality. We are really going to miss her,” she added.
Webster’s mother, Pamela, posted a heartfelt message for her daughter online just last month before she went missing.
“Amanda Webster, my beautiful daughter. I didn’t know that there was a daughter’s day. Sorry I missed it but everyday is daughter’s day in my life since the day you were born. Love you to the moon and back forever and ever,” she wrote.
“Awww thank you Mom! Love you too!! I didn’t know there was a daughter’s day either-but I’ll take it haha,” Webster replied.
The bereaved mother responded on Saturday, saying, “I appreciate everyone’s thoughts and support. Amanda had been submerged in water for some time when her body was just discovered in the river.
The school system announced that starting on Monday, staff and kids would have access to counseling services.