Body Found at Ridley Creek State Park in Media

The young woman's body was badly decomposed. Police have changed their initial assumption about whose it might be.

"Ridley Creek in SP Tgiving" by Smallbones via Wikipedia

Photo of Ridley Creek State Park by Smallbones. Licensed under CC0 via Commons.

Just 15 minutes from Philadelphia, Delco’s woodsy and pastoral Ridley Creek State Park draws hundreds of hikers, anglers, horseback riders, picknickers, hunters, sledders and cross-country skiers to its 2,600 acres each year. It’s a beautiful spot, but one that seemed less than idyllic on New Year’s Day, when a hiker who was walking off-trail discovered a dead body. According to police, the “skeletonized” condition of the body suggests the white female was dead for several months before she was found. Investigators note that the dead woman was tall and thin, and was probably in her late teens or early 20s.

Such a discovery naturally sets off alarm bells for families of missing persons. Upper Darby Police Superintendent Michael Chitwood initially told the Delco Daily Times that he believed the remains might be those of Amanda De Guio, a 24-year-old mother of two who went missing from her mother’s Drexel Hill home in June of 2014. Amanda’s mother, Joanne De Guio, told the Times that the family got a call from State Police on Friday. “We just gave a description but haven’t heard anything. We’re all very distraught. Right now it’s hard. We don’t know what to do. Until we hear a name, it’s very nerve-wracking.”

Chitwood had told the Times, “We all feel there is a strong possibility it is her.” But now he says they’re thinking it’s not Amanda. “I certainly can’t say 100 percent sure, but after some physical evidence was reviewed, my assumption has changed.”

Amanda’s sister was not happy with the Times‘ linkage between Amanda and this newly discovered body. On the Facebook page Help Find Amanda De Guio, she wrote: “Please know that the article published today about my sister was very upsetting to our family. The news media can be so unkind and cold. Our family needs prayers, respect and support. Not negativity.”

Chitwood says his initial suspicion that it was Amanda was based on the timeframe, the location, and the fact that the body was fully clothed. “We’re making an assumption that Amanda could be deceased, hence [our conclusion about] the body in Ridley Park.”

We reached out to Amanda’s sister but did not hear back as of press time.

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