Van found in canal may solve decade-long mystery

Posted by Rachel Leigh - email

PORT ST LUCIE, FL (WFLX) - A Port St. Lucie family is dealing with a lot of pain as they come to grips with what amounts to a delayed mourning period. Wednesday night, they received news that lost loved ones, who have been gone for over a decade, may have finally been found.

In June of 1999 Nelta Jacques and her two young daughters, Juanita, 5, and Johanna, 7, left Fort Lauderdale headed to Tampa in their 1996 Green Dodge Caravan.

They never arrived in Tampa and have not been seen since.

But Wednesday, Broward County divers were performing a training dive in a canal along I-75 in Western Broward county. That's when they found an older model Dodge Caravan in 18 feet of water heavily covered with algae, and inside - divers made a gruesome discovery - human remains.

The brother of Nelta Jacques says the Broward County Sheriff's Office called him saying the license plate on that van matches the one driven by his sister when she disappeared with his two nieces.

The Medical Examiner has yet to positively identify any bodies, but certainly, it appears, this family may soon have some closure on this decade-long mystery.