Official statement from the University of West Florida: On the evening of Thursday, Oct. 4, 2012, the UWF Police department responded to the Edward Ball Nature Trail to investigate the discovery of human bones. The discovery was made approximately 25 feet off of the nature trail’s boardwalk in an area heavily covered in thick underbrush. The Medical Examiner’s Office has just confirmed that the recovered bones are that of William (Billy) Shores. Shores’ vehicle was found abandoned on the UWF main campus in February of 2011. Shores was not affiliated with the university.
“Our condolences are with the Shores family as they go through this difficult time,” said UWF President Judith Bense.
No threat was posed to the university community and the Edward Ball Nature Trail reopened Friday, Oct. 5. As always, the safety of UWF students, faculty and staff is the university’s top priority.
Shores was last seen by his mother around 12:30 p.m. on Feb. 18, 2011. His 2007 blue 4-door Pontiac Vibe was found on the campus been found on the campus of the University of West Florida six days later near the Nature Trail. K-9s from Escambia Search and Rescue and the Escambia County Sheriff’s Office searched the UWF property but failed to find his body.