THE heartbroken family of a missing barber have today confirmed that the remains found yesterday during a search of Cavehill were those of Dean McIlwaine.
In a statement, the family have thanked everyone who helped in the searches for Dean over the past nine days.
They thanked the PSNI, Councillor Paul McCusker, Belfast City Council, Bellevue Taxis for sending free taxis to Cavehill and Tesco’s at Northcott for sending free food for the search volunteers.
“From the bottom of our hearts we thank every single person,” said the statement.
Dean was last seen on the Carnmoney Road in Newtownabbey around 1 pm on Thursday, July 13.
Earlier that day, the 22-year-old was captured on CCTV going in and out of a Spar shop in Monkstown.
Searches had been conducted across the Newtownabbey area without success.
Police also mounted checkpoints on Carnmoney Road and Beverley Road handing out leaflets to motorists seeking help in locating Dean.
Yesterday, hundreds of volunteers gave up of their Saturday to search the Cavehill area where Dean was finally located