Sad end to Camino man's disappearance

12/29/2012 12:00 AM

12/29/2012 12:10 AM

The body of a man missing for more than a month has been found in El Dorado County.

When David Clement, 30, of Camino was thought to have gone for a jog on the morning of Nov. 6 and never returned, his father worried that he might have been attacked by a mountain lion.

Searchers looked many times for the Army veteran, but had no luck.

Then, on Dec. 19, his father and other searchers tried again and found Clement's remains in the Snows Road area of Camino.

The body was found by his father and searchers Shelli LaMadrid of El Dorado County Search and Rescue and Jody Finne-Frock. The young man's body was located in an area searched earlier.

"I found him," said David Clement. "But I could not go look at him close enough. It's hard for a dad to do that. Shelli and Jody came over and identified him and we called 911. He did shoot himself."

The body was off the side of the road in an area of low-growing shrubs.

John Clement said his son spent two years in the Army and was discharged in 2001. He pursued acting for a time, serving as an extra in movies, before taking an information technology job with the California Highway Patrol – a position he left two years ago.

David Clement had been depressed for a time as he struggled to pay bills while developing a computer game, "but he had worked through that," his father said in November.

When he was unable to reach his son by phone last month, John Clement went to the house. His son's motorcycle was there, but the weather was bad so his father figured he had gone somewhere with friends.

A couple of days later, John Clement again went to the Camino house David shared with a roommate. The roommate hadn't seen David either, but assumed they had just been missing one another.

David Clement's new running shoes and a jacket were gone, along with a pistol he usually carried as protection against mountain lions when he ran in the woods. His cellphone and wallet were still at the house.

Clement wanted to thank searchers and others in the community who helped the family.

"We had huge support from friends," said John Clement.

Memorial services are scheduled for 2 p.m. today at the Church of the Foothills, 2380 Merrychase Drive, Cameron Park.

A fund has been set up to assist the Clement family with burial expenses.

Donations may be sent to the David Clement Memorial Fund at El Dorado Savings Bank or John Clement, P.O. Box 2161, Shingle Springs 95682.

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