ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — A body has been found along the Rio Grande not far from where a Grand Junction pastor’s vehicle was found as he went in search of a supposed hidden treasure, the Associated Press reported Monday.
The body has not been identified but it’s believed to be that of Paris Wallace.
New Mexico State Police said family members told authorities that Wallace, who is the lead pastor of Connection Church in Grand Junction, had gone there to search for Forrest Fenn’s treasure, rumored to be hidden somewhere in the mountains.
Fenn is an author who owned an art gallery in Santa Fe, New Mexico. He announced in 2010 that he had hidden a chest full of gold and jewels in the Rockies worth at least $1 million.
People have scoured his writings, including an autobiography “The Thrill of the Chase,” hoping for clues to find the treasure.
Fenn also occasionally releases new clues on where the treasure might be.
The family said no one had heard from Wallace since Tuesday. His wife reported him missing Wednesday when he missed a meeting.
Wallace’s belongings were found at the Rodeway Inn in Espanola, New Mexico. His truck was found Thursday afternoon.
Authorities found a receipt for a rope in Wallace’s truck and a rope was found tied across the Rio Pueblo River.
Officials believe the rope was likely Wallace’s. After following the river to the Rio Grande, crews found Wallace’s backpack.
Parts of Fenn’s poetry refers to high water and canyons.
In 2016, a Broomfield man in search of the hidden treasure was found dead at Cochiti Lake on the Rio Grande in New Mexico. Randy Bilyeau was 54 years old.