Gabby Pettito’s stepfather identified her remains from a sweatshirt he bought at his favorite clothing store on Long Island.
Jim Schmidt told Dr Phil how police had shown him a piece of clothing retrieved from Wyoming’s Bridger-Teton National Forest that he believed to belong to Ms. Petito.
“They describe to me that piece of clothing that matched one of her favorite sweatshirts, which we knew was hers,” he said, taking it from a store close to his home in New York. Was purchased.
Mr. Schmidt, the former Long Island fire chief, had joined the FBI-led search of Ms. Petito, days before her remains were found on September 19.
Mr Schmidt said four people had recently gone missing in the same area, including a young woman like Ms Petito, and they needed to make sure they found the correct body.
During Interview with Dr. Phil, which aired on CBS, Mr. Schmidt said he would have to collect himself for half an hour before he could call to inform the rest of the family that he had positively identified Ms. Petito.
He called Nicole Schmidt in Long Island and Joseph and Tara Pettito in Florida on the conference call.
“We were all crying, couldn’t believe it because we all held on to hope,” said Mr. Schmidt.
“I felt it was my responsibility to make that call and I was able to prepare myself… I was able to relay it to everyone.”
Nicole Schmidt recalled the moment she heard the news.
“They said they found the remains, and we knew it was Gabby. She didn’t kill me right away.. but I knew she was gone. As a mother I knew she was gone.”
Ms. Petito’s father Joseph Pettito and stepmother Tara Pettito, mother Nicole Schmidt and stepfather Mr. Schmidt sat down for her First joint interview with Dr. Phil, which aired Tuesday afternoon on CBS.
Credit: www.independent.co.uk /