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“We all feel the hurt”: Colfax High School students mourn missing teen found dead


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    COLFAX, California (KOVR) — Shock and heartbreak hit a Placer County community after the body of missing 16-year-old Dante de la Torre was found in a wooded area.

The update from search crews spread fast and hit hard.

“I’m just in shock right now. I’m in shock. You don’t think it’s going to happen until it happens,” said Brady Liden.

Liden grew up with de la Torre on the same street, played soccer with him and then went to high school with him. Liden describes him as happy, super nice and awesome.

“I remember he would just come over to my house, we would lift and go on a run together. It was always fun times with him,” he said.

Liden is now in disbelief to hear his childhood friend passed away.

“Just an unfortunate situation and it’s like really sad for all of us. Like we all feel the hurt,” he told CBS13.

Dozens of search and rescue team members started looking for de la Torre after he went missing near the Gold Run rest area, leaving his car in the parking lot Wednesday.

“This is a heavily wooded area. There’s varying terrain, steep terrain, rough terrain but it’s heavily wooded,” said Angela Musallam, a spokesperson for the Placer County Sheriff’s Office.

Equipped with snow boots, a hand towel, water and a shovel, investigators believe de la Torre set out to work on a school project when he went missing.

“He was doing a science project. He had to get dirt for a science project and I don’t know,” Liden said.

District Officials sent out this statement:

“Colfax High School, along with the entire Placer Union High School District, is heartbroken to learn of the passing of Dante de la Torre as reported by the Placer County Sheriff’s Office. Events and details leading to his passing are unknown at this time as the Sheriff’s Office continues to investigate.

Such tragedies, especially when they involve young people, are very difficult to process. Chaplains and additional District Counseling staff will be on the Colfax High School campus to provide support to our students and staff as they deal with this devastating news.

Please join us in keeping Dante’s family, friends and the Colfax community in your thoughts during this difficult time.”

“At school, everyone was just down and it was just an off day for everyone,” Liden said.

A junior in high school is gone too soon, leaving a community in mourning and offering his family support.

“I’m just really sorry and I’m here for you whenever you need me,” Liden said to the de la Torre family.

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