NEW ORLEANS, (WGNO) – Friends and family members of 19-year-old Hayley Howard are playing the waiting game after the missing teen’s body was recovered from inside her car pulled from a waterway Wednesday.
Orleans Parish Coroner’s Office said the official cause of death and toxicology report won’t be released for another 2-3 weeks as part of the ongoing investigation.
Wednesday, the discovering of Howard’s car stunned about hundred volunteers searching near Irish Bayou for some answers. The University of New Orleans student had been missing for four days.
Howard was driving to Slidell from UNO early Saturday morning, when officials believe she veered off of Interstate-10 and into the waters of the Irish Bayou.
Police say earlier that night Howard was said to have had a flat tire. According to Howard’s father some good Samaritans helped her fix it.
Authorities are still investigating her death as an accident, but hope to release more information later Thursday. Officials say they will inspect Howard’s car.
Howard was from Slidell. She was studying pharmacy. Her parents say she was a loving and caring girl.
“Just seeing the good in people and almost a little naive, but not thinking the way some of us do, but that is very typical of her, just seeing the good in people and wanting to go thank them. She’s a very wonderful young lady,” said Hayley’s mother Cindy Howard.