With body found story

A body found in February by deputies with the Smith County Sheriff's Office has been identified.

Patrol deputies answered a call on Feb. 23 about a deceased individual found in a wooded area of Smith County in the 12600 block of U.S. Highway 69 North.

Through DNA evidence and assistance from the Southwestern Institute of Forensic Sciences in Dallas, the man was identified as Christopher John Michael, 53, of Tyler, according to a news release from the Smith County Sheriff's Office. 

Michael was a U.S. Air Force veteran, the sheriff's office said, and the cause of death was determined as natural, with no foul play suspected.

Children playing in the area found the body in February and alerted their parents, who called 911, according to the sheriff's office.

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