Remains identified as missing woman Lauren “El” Cho, 30

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The New York Post reported that human remains found in the California desert have been identified by the San Bernardino County Coroner’s Office. Lauren Cho, a thirty-year-old woman from New Jersey disappeared from her Airbnb on June 28th.

The woman, also known as “El,” was identified. Her remains were found in the rugged desert wilderness in Southern California’s Yucca Valley just outside Joshua Tree National Park.

Images of the woman were circulated and multiple searches were done in the area.

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The family still needs answers

Her family launched a Facebook page to raise awareness when they discovered Cho was missing. They have provided public updates on the search. They do not believe the cause of death was suicide. And have denied the public speculation that she was mentally ill or on drugs.

”Some are quick to post on social media sites that Lauren was suicidal. However, suicide by exposure is extremely uncommon due to the length of time it takes for one to succumb to the environment,” the family said.

On Thursday they posted.

“We want answers. Lauren “El” Cho is a talented musician, vocalist, chef, baker, artist, photographer, former music educator. And former piercing apprentice,” a statement dedicated to Lauren Cho says. “She is the most loving, caring, and loyal aunt, sister, and friend, and the most hilarious person you could ever meet. And we cannot give up on her.”

The missing woman’s story gained renewed interest over racial disparities in coverage during the late-summer disappearance of Gabby Petito and later Brian Laundrie.

“We would like to take a moment to acknowledge the messages and questions that have come our way this past week regarding the Gabby Petito case in comparison to what is happening with El.”

“We realize that on the surface, the public information for both cases shares some similarities. We understand the frustration many of you have expressed about how and why certain cases receive national coverage.”

“Ultimately, these two cases are NOT the same and the differences run deeper than what meets the public eye.”

“We are wholly appreciative of the love that continues to be shown to El. We empathize deeply with Gabby’s family and hope that both our cases bring forth positive resolution…Somebody knows something. About El, about Gabby..”

 

Lauren Cho was last seen by ex-boyfriend

The cause of death is still pending toxicology results, the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Office said in a statement.

“No further information will be released on this case until such time toxicology results are available and new information is discovered as a result,” officials said.

Cho had only recently relocated to the West Coast. She comes from New Jersey where she worked as a high school music teacher. And she was converting an old school bus into a food truck. And was hoping for a new life as a pastry chef.

Staying at a Benmar Trail Rental with friends and an ex-boyfriend, she was last seen on a remote hiking trail. It is claimed she left her personal belongings behind following an argument.

Ex-boyfriend, Cory Orell, reported her missing about three hours later, telling authorities she was “suffering from mental illness,” authorities said. The Sheriff’s department said that he was fully cooperating with investigators.

Orell is the last known person to have seen Cho. The couple met on Memorial Day Weekend and drove to California on Orell’s tour bus.