Family sad, but relieved to have answers to missing cousins

March 18, 2020 GMT

RAPID CITY, S.D. (AP) — Family members of two cousins found dead on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation say they’re saddened, yet relieved to how what happened to the men more than two months after they went missing near Manderson.

Robert “RJ” Kills Enemy Jr., 23, and Vincent “Stevie” Little Dog, 25, were last seen Dec. 27. Their bodies were found last weekend and on Monday.

Kills Enemy’s mother and Little Dog’s aunt, Willene Kills Enemy, says it’s a sad time for the family, but there is relief in knowing they have been found.

“Although it wasn’t the way we wanted, they still came home” which is a “major relief for me,” she said.

The Rapid City Journal reports the Oglala Lakota County Sheriff’s Office, tribal agencies, and many volunteers searched for the cousins by foot, horseback, ATVS, and with the help of dogs, drones and aircraft.

Oglala Sioux Tribe’s Department of Public Safety Chief Robert Ecoffey said he’s confident the bodies belong to the cousins due to the clothes they were wearing, but DNA testing will confirm their identities.