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Body found in Teller County confirmed to be missing 21-year-old

TELLER COUNTY, Colo. (KRDO) -- The Teller County Sheriff's Office confirmed the dead body found along Highway 67 in Teller County is Eduardo "Lalo" Castaneda, who has been missing from Colorado Springs since Feb. 27.

According to the Teller County coroner, Castaneda died from a skull fracture between 1:30 a.m. and 3:30 a.m. on Feb. 27. But his body wasn't found by the Teller County Sheriff's Office until three days later along Highway 67 between Divide and Cripple Creek, which started the suspicious death investigation.

Due to the high elevation and cold nights, his body was so frozen the autopsy couldn't be performed until Monday.

The Teller County coroner told 13 Investigates foul play is not a factor in his death, despite the Teller County Sheriff's Office still investigating it as suspicious. The TCSO declined to comment.

Castaneda was last seen Monday morning between 2 a.m. and 3 a.m. in Woodland Park. His family said he was coming back to Colorado Springs from Cripple Creek, where he went to the casinos with friends. But he never returned.

In a GoFundMe to raise funeral costs, the description states, "According to accounts from the people he was with, Lalo got off the vehicle to use the restroom and was never seen again."

13 Investigates spoke with Castaneda's family last week before it was confirmed he had died. They remember him as someone who could make anyone laugh.

"Even in sad situations, he always finds a way to crack a joke," said Adrian Aviles, Lalo's cousin, last week. "Any situation at any time, there is never a quiet moment."

His family and friends said it was unlike him to go missing, which is why they are looking for answers.

"He was my other half," said Maria Castaneda, Lalo's sister, last week. "He was like the light of everything. Even if somebody was mad at him, he would still make sure to make them laugh. He would make them happy."

Castaneda's family is meeting with Teller County officials Monday night to learn what may have led to his death.

"I know it’s difficult what we are going through, but I am going to remember him for the person he was," said Lolo Castaneda, Lalo's father, in Spanish last week. "He was my right hand man, and will continue to be. He will be watching over me from heaven.”

The GoFundMe is to "help the family with all the funeral and burial costs associated with this tragic event." You can find the GoFundMe, here.

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Quinn Ritzdorf

Quinn is a reporter with the 13 Investigates team. Learn more about him here.


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