Courtesy Our Friend Leanne Hecht Bearden/Facebook
Elaine Aradillas
February 14, 2014 06:00 PM

Leanne Bearden’s husband reported her missing after she went for a walk and didn’t return to their home outside San Antonio, Texas, on Jan. 17.

Two weeks later, her family suggested she may have wanted to disappear.

On Thursday, her body was found less than a mile from where she was last seen.

“The preliminary autopsy results indicate asphyxiation by hanging with the opinion on manner of death, suicide,” says Police Chief Donna O’Conner Friday in a statement obtained by PEOPLE. “The final ruling is pending toxicology results. The investigative information indicates the death occurred a short time after she was seen leaving the residence for a walk.”

As friends and family awaited the results, questions continued to swirl about what happened the day the 33-year-old went missing.

Leanne’s husband Josh, 39, told authorities that Leanne took her backpack and went for a walk at about 1:30 p.m. She was expected to return an hour later for a scheduled phone interview with a job prospect. “I’m just worried sick because we have not heard one word,” her father-in-law Will Bearden told My San Antonio at the time. “It’s just totally unlike her.”

The couple, who have been married for nearly five years, was staying with Josh’s parents after a two-year trip around the world, which included 57 countries. His family says she was having a difficult time readjusting from her trip.

“The pressure of transitioning from her two-year trip back into what we consider “normal” life seems to have left her very anxious and stressed,” the family said in a statement on Jan. 30.

In the days and weeks following her disappearance, volunteers scoured the wooded areas around her home. There were even reported sightings from Laredo to Houston. Unfortunately, the search ended when a man working in the area spotted her body and called 911.

“Although this is not the outcome we had hoped for, we draw comfort and support from the outpouring of prayers, actions and good wishes from all, including over 20,000 Facebook friends,” Will Bearden says in the statement.

You May Like