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Searchers find body of missing Eagan teenager

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The body of a teenager who left his Eagan home on Nov. 28 has been found in a park not far from where he lived.

KSTP reports that searchers on Saturday found the body of Elijah David Buchanan in a wooded area of Patrick Eagan Park. The station said that the preliminary investigation indicated Buchanan, 19, had succumbed to the cold on the night he left home.

The Pioneer Press reported that the Dakota County Special Operations Team planned a a grid-style search of the 113-acre park, where police believed Buchanan was headed the night he disappeared. The team is made up of police, fire and EMS workers who are trained in urban search and rescue.

Authorities had searched the park with a Minnesota State Patrol helicopter in the days after Buchanan disappeared, but not by foot.

According to a post on the city of Eagan's website, investigators say it does not appear foul play was involved. The Hennepin County Medical Examiner is assisting.

WCCO reported that police officers responded to Buchanan's home following a report that he was “out of control” and caused significant damage inside the home. Buchanan fled before officers arrived, without his wallet and cell phone.

The Bring Elijah Home Facebook page, established by the Buchanan family, posted a statement Saturday that read, in part, "It is often hard to understand why life can take us on so many hard twists and turns. Elijah's spirit now resides in us all." The family thanked the community for its "outpouring of love and support."

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