Troy, N.Y. – It is now confirmed that the body found in a burnt truck in Nassau is that of missing Sand Lake man, Ryan Patton. Patton had been reported missing for more than a week before his truck was found. NEWS 10 spoke exclusively with the Patton Family about the tragic ending to their search.
The Patton family gathered Friday night in their home where so many memories of their son, brother, uncle, and nephew Ryan still remain.
“What I'm going to miss about Ryan is he had a sparkle in his eye,” said his father Ron Patton.
It's that sparkle the family believes that drove so many strangers to do whatever they could to help find him, searching for miles for hours on end.
“Outpouring support of the community complete strangers, businesses lending their parking lots. Restaurants, bathrooms, bringing food. Just not hesitating to step forward and do whatever they could to find him,” said Ryan's brother Eric Patton.
For more than a week the Patton family searched for Ryan, not knowing when or if they would find him.
“Just the guessing. The sleepless nights. Every time the phone would ring your heart would sink,” said Eric Patton.
It wasn't the homecoming loved ones of the missing pray for when Ryan's truck was found badly burned on a logging road in Nassau. The Rensselaer County Sheriff's Office says speed and alcohol were factors in the crash.
“Speed absolutely. I mean of course we saw the vehicle we're not going to dwell on his slight recklessness. I mean that's how he was and that was his personality,” said Eric Patton.
Eric is finding some comfort in memories but will deeply miss all of the things he and Ryan had talked about for their future.
“We had plans of helping me build houses, remodel rooms. That would have been nice to do projects like that with him,” said Eric Patton.
Through all the pain and heartache the Patton family has learned a valuable lesson this Thanksgiving.
“Grab the one closest to you and give them a hug and that's what we need through the holidays. Whether it's a family member a friend an acquaintance. A hUg goes a long way,” said Eric Patton.
Visiting hours will be held at St. Henry's Church in Averill Park on Monday from 2 until 7 p.m. Funeral services will be at the same church on Tuesday at 10:30 a.m.