DETROIT (WWJ/AP) – Two missing people have been identified after authorities collected DNA samples from their relatives as part of an “Identify the Missing” event in Detroit.

Michigan State Police Trooper Sarah Krebs said, in one case, a woman’s DNA was used to help her find the body of her missing son at the morgue.

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In the second case, an elderly man who had been missing for 12 years was found alive and well in another state — and was reconnected with his family.

Forty-one missing people cases were processed from 63 DNA samples collected June 25 during an open house for families of missing people. Samples were taken with swabs from inside their mouths.

The data went into the FBI’s Combined DNA Index System to find possible matches.

The oldest case stretched back 40 years.

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“From what I’ve heard from most of the families that come to these types of events, they would rather know than not know,” said Krebs.

“And most of the people that are coming there, they know why they’re coming,” she said. “They’re not calling the Wayne County morgue, you know, to find them alive. They’re dealing with the fact that they know their remains may be there.”

Michigan has more than 4,000 missing people cases and more than 100 sets of unidentified human remains.

State police host an annual “Missing in Michigan” event to help families across the state who have missing loved ones by collecting tips and updating records, and to raise awareness on the causes and impacts surrounding missing persons. This year’s event will be held from 1-5 p.m. on Sunday, September 8, at the Eagle Eye Golf Club in East Lansing, Mich.

Those who were unable to attend the “Identify the Missing” event and would like to provide a DNA sample should contact D/Tpr. Sarah Krebs with the MSP at or 313-215-0675.

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