Partial human remains found at Fort Bliss for second time this year

Partial human remains were discovered Thursday on Fort Bliss, Texas, in an area near the base of the Franklin Mountains in northeast El Paso. It is the second time this year that human remains were discovered on the expansive Army base.


By ROSE L. THAYER | STARS AND STRIPES Published: March 19, 2021

AUSTIN, Texas — Partial human remains were discovered Thursday afternoon in a publicly accessible portion of Fort Bliss. It was the second time in three months that such a discovery has occurred.

A person walking a dog on Fort Bliss property near a U.S. Border Patrol station in northeast El Paso at the base of the Franklin Mountains saw the remains and notified local law enforcement, which then contacted the Fort Bliss Provost Marshal Office, according to base officials.

Agents for the Fort Bliss Criminal Investigation Command were dispatched in coordination with El Paso medical examiners to investigate the scene and determined “the remains have been there for quite some time, due to their condition.”

The remains were discovered above ground, and there is no evidence to indicate they had been buried, according to Fort Bliss officials.

In January, partial human remains were found at Fort Bliss off Highway 506 at the McGregor Training Complex, an expansive desert training area that crosses the Texas state line into New Mexico — about 75 miles from Thursday’s discovery.

Both sets of remains were sent to the Armed Forces Medical Examiner at Dover Air Force Base, Del., for identification. Identification on the first remains discovered is ongoing, according to Fort Bliss officials.

“There is no danger to area residents or the community,” according to base officials.

Neither discovery is believed to be connected to Pvt. Richard Halliday, a Fort Bliss soldier who went missing in July. The search for him remains active and ongoing.

Fort Bliss is located on the western edge of Texas along the U.S. border with Mexico. It’s the second-largest Defense Department base with 1.12 million acres. More than 25,000 soldiers are assigned to the base.

Twitter: @Rose_Lori