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Dental records help identify skeletal remains of man found in Pasco County woods

Robert Wilding, 32, is remembered for being kind to others — and having a love for music.

HUDSON, Fla. — Scott Wilding's brother, Robert, loved music — all sorts of music, from rock and roll to rap. He played bass guitar for some time, too.

"My parents did not want to take him to the [Inanse Clown Posse] concert," Scott said. "They'd ask if I could...I used to paint his face to do his clown makeup to go in.

"Putting a few hours to put his makeup on and go to the concert venue to hang out, crack jokes back and forth — those were some of the happiest moments."

Some of these memories now help to get through a difficult time. The Pasco County Sheriff's Office identified the skeletal remains found Sept. 13 in Hudson as those of 32-year-old Robert Wilding. 

Dental records helped to make the positive identification, deputies said in a statement. Robert Wilding was reportedly known to stay in the area where the investigation was ongoing.

Robert Wilding hadn't been seen since May of this year until his remains were located. No foul play is suspected in the man's death, according to the sheriff's office.

"He loved music and was a really funny guy," Scott Wilding said. "Everybody that I talked to — even though he obviously had his problems, everybody does, everything that has been said about him since his passing has been incredibly positive.

"With any of the problems that he had, he still took time to help friends. He still was a positive impact with the people around him."

Just after 4 p.m. on Sept. 13, the sheriff's office responded to a wooded area off of U.S. Highway 19. K-9s and forensics teams with the sheriff's office entered and exited the wooded area throughout the afternoon and evening.

Several people who are familiar with the area said it's somewhere people who were struggling would spend time. Charlie Menafo said he walks by those woods all the time and is not surprised by this discovery. 

"I see people who are in jeopardy, hungry. I see people that need to go somewhere where they can take care of themselves and their hygiene, a lot of them are displaced," he said.

Scott Wildling says he just wants people to know so many people cared for his brother.

"Whatever happened, those weren't just bones," he said. "That was a person who was very much loved."

Editor's note: The age of the man has been updated to reflect the correct age. Robert Wilding was 32, not 42, the sheriff's office now says.

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