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Kaylene Oehling: Human remains identified as 20-year-old woman who went missing in 2020

Human Remains Identified
Human Remains Identified 03:36

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — Allegheny County investigators say a set of human remains found off the 1200 block of Washington Boulevard on March 19 belong to a young woman who disappeared nearly three years ago.

Investigators say they are the remains of Kaylene Oehling of Etna.

For the first time on Friday, Jason Oehling visited the area feet from where his daughter's remains were found.

"Kaylene's my baby, always was my baby, and always will be," Jason Oehling told KDKA-TV.

Allegheny County police said last Sunday hunters were in the woods off Washington Boulevard in Lincoln-Lemington when they found a human skull. Investigators searched the area and found more remains. On Friday, they identified them as the missing 20-year-old woman.

"All the blood just ran from me. Just hearing them words, 'Jason, it's Kaylene, it's confirmed,'" Jason Oehling said. "Total shock, just total shock, because you just always hope for a different outcome."

Kaylene Oehling vanished under suspicious circumstances back in January 2020. She was planning to go to her mother's house in Etna to babysit her younger siblings but never showed up. Ever since, her family kept pushing for answers, conducting searches and holding vigils.

"As a family, we were never going to give up," Jason Oehling said.

"I still text her every day, but it just hits you. It's one of those things that hits you over and over again," said Hailey Oehling. Kaylene's younger sister.

She learned the news by hearing her mom on the phone.

"I heard my mom scream out in pain. There's nothing like hearing that sound and I knew instantly," she said.

Jason Oehling said detectives told him county police and the assistant district attorney met Friday. The medical examiner has yet to rule on a cause of death, but Jason Oehling said even if the coroner rules the cause unknown, police told him they still could have enough to file charges.

County police would not confirm this to KDKA-TV, saying the case remains active and open.

Kaylene Oehling's ex, Michael Manno, has not been named a suspect in this case, but last year he cut a plea deal on a corruption of minors charge. Police accused him of sending explicit photographs of Kaylene Oehling to her younger sister after she went missing. He was sentenced to at least six months in jail.

"The hardest part was not knowing. So now that we know, we can piece together what happened and where to go from here," Hailey said.

Kaylene's family feels some relief as they now prepare to lay her to rest, but their fight isn't over.

"We're not going to go away until Kaylene gets the justice she deserves," her father said.

Shortly after speaking to KDKA-TV on Friday, Jason Oehling said one of his daughters stepped on a bone and found another bone feet from where his daughter's remains were found. They called 911 and he said the medical examiner found a third bone. Forensics will confirm whether they also belong to Kaylene Oehling.

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