GREAT FALLS — Sally Jane Demarais-Smith was found dead on Sunday afternoon, the Cascade County Sheriff's Office said in a news release on Sunday evening.
Around 2:30 p.m., her body was found inside her 2005 Toyota Corolla in a storage unit at 3033 Malmstrom Drive, according to Cascade County Sheriff Jesse Slaughter.
Slaughter said an autopsy is scheduled for Tuesday in Missoula. Slaughter said he will provide an update on Tuesday after reviewing the autopsy. The storage unit was under the county's jurisdiction — not the Air Force Base — so the Sheriff's Office will oversee efforts investigating her death.
Next of kin has been notified. We do not yet know the cause or manner of death. CCSO released no further information on Sunday night.
Smith, a 52-year-old mother beloved by the Great Falls community, had been missing since September 25. She was last seen that afternoon. It was reported that she may have been on her way to the Malta area before going missing. GFPD requested a Missing/Endangered Person Alert for Smith from the Montana Department of Justice on September 29.
Smith worked as a speech and language pathologist at Meadow Lark Elementary School. She also worked at the Scottish Rite Childhood Language Disorders Clinic and as a spin class instructor at the Peak Health & Wellness Center. She had four children with her husband, Troy Smith.
In recent weeks, a Facebook community was set up by her friends and family. More than 4,400 community members joined. Family and friends trekked the northwest looking for her.
We will update you when we learn more.