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Body of missing Maine teen recovered following 5-day search

Theo Ferrara, 14, was last seen Thursday evening.

The body of a 14-year-old boy, who went missing Thursday evening, was recovered Tuesday afternoon following an exhaustive search by Maine authorities who used resources on the ground, in the sky, and in the water.

Maine Marine Patrol recovered a body from Maquoit Bay after officers spotted it from the air, the Portland Press Herald reports.

Regional School Unit 5 Superintendent ​​​​​​​Jean Skorapa confirmed that the body was Theo Ferrara, a freshman at Freeport High School, in a post to the school district Facebook page.

“It is with a heavy heart that I write this letter to inform you that this afternoon, Theo Ferrara was found deceased,” Skorapa wrote. “Our sincere condolences to Theo’s family and friends. During this time as the school community processes this news and copes with grief, the school district will offer counseling and bereavement support to all students and staff.”

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The superintendent said the high school cafeteria would remain open until 9 p.m. Tuesday so that students could feel free to gather.

“A student death is a difficult and challenging situation that can generate anxiety for some students,” Skorapa wrote. “How we, as adults, manage ourselves serves as an important model for helping kids handle tragedies like this. We encourage you to listen carefully to your child and answer questions openly and honestly should they occur. Accepting your child’s feelings and validating them is beneficial.”

Ferrara was reportedly last seen walking Thursday between 4:30 and 5 p.m. in a northeast direction from his home in Freeport to Brunswick on Flying Point Road, according to the Freeport Police Department.

Ferrara, who was listed as a missing person, did not have a history of running away or disappearing, police said.

During a press conference Saturday, Freepoint Police Chief Nathaniel Goodman asked any residents in the Flying Point Road and Bunganuc Road area of Freeport and Brunswick to go over any camera footage they may have, particularly in the window of 4:30 to 8 p.m. on Thursday.

“It’s a coordinated search effort,” Lt. Jason Luce of the Maine Warden Service said during the press conference.

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Luce explained that the Freeport and Brunswick police departments and the Maine Warden Service had been following up on any leads sent into the tipline. There were also roughly 30 search and rescue volunteers, eight K-9s, and Maine Marine Patrol aiding in the efforts to locate Ferrara.

Police had asked that residents in the vicinity of Flying Point Road check their properties, including any sheds, boats, campers, etc., for signs that someone had been in them.

When asked by a reporter Saturday if there had been any signs of foul play, Goodman said, “We don’t have any evidence or anything actionable that is leading us to believe that that’s a factor right now.”

Still, Goodman cautioned, “There’s a lot of variables and we rule none of them out until we have a chance to follow up and verify anything that we get that we can work on.”

When asked if there were any signs that the teen was troubled in any way, Luce responded that officials always look into that, but there had been “no real red flags” so far.

Read the full statement from the school district below:

One of the posts shared by Freeport police amid the search, featuring a photo of Ferrara, can be found below:

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