The Saunders County Sheriff’s Office announced that the body of Tammy Sukstorf was found Sunday evening after searches involving multiple agencies were conducted over the weekend.
On Monday, results of an autopsy ruled Sukstorf’s cause of death to be suicide, according to Saunders County Sheriff Kevin Stukenholtz.
A dog on a private search team helped find the body of the 52-year-old Cedar Bluffs school teacher following a two-day ground and air search, Stukenholtz said in an interview with the Tribune. The Saunders County Sheriff’s Office, Cedar Bluffs Fire Department, the Nebraska State Patrol’s helicopter and private pilots with the Civil Air Patrol conducted searches in the immediate area after Sukstorf’s vehicle was found on a farmstead just a few miles from her home with all of her belongings still inside.
Sukstorf’s family also organized a group effort to search local fields, according to information released by the sheriff’s office. Sukstorf was originally reported missing on Saturday morning after last being seen at approximately 10:30 p.m. the night before, July 5.
On Sunday evening, a search dog with Canine Search Team led searchers to a creek bed near County Roads 19 and S, about a half mile from the farmstead where Sukstorf’s vehicle was found, Stukenholtz said.
The sheriff’s office thanked volunteers and agencies involved in the search via a Facebook post on Sunday evening. Cedar Bluffs Public Schools opened on Monday afternoon to provide crisis counselors to students and parents after the longtime school teacher’s body was found on Sunday night.
“It is with great sadness that we inform you of the tragic loss of our second-grade teacher Mrs. Tammy Sukstorf,” read a statement released on the school’s Facebook page. “Tammy has taught at Cedar Bluffs Elementary School since 1994, touching so many lives in the process. We understand that many of you are grieving and we as a school would like to help.” A statement released on the school’s Facebook page prior to the discovery of Sukstorf’s body on Sunday evening described shock felt within the tight-knit community when news broke that she had gone missing.
“Tammy is a kind and loving teacher that impacts not only her classroom but everyone who comes into contact with her,” read a portion of the statement.
Funeral services for Sukstorf are scheduled for 11 a.m. Friday, July 12, at St. Matthew Lutheran Church in Cedar Bluffs.
Visitation will be Thursday, July 11, from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. with family receiving friends from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at St. Matthew Lutheran Church. Visitation will continue 1 hour prior to the service at the church. Burial will be at Union Cemetery.