GREENVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) — Remains found in a heavily wooded area several days before Christmas have been identified as those of a Greenville man missing since early December 2019, according to the Pitt County Sheriff’s Office.

Phillip Rampey, 44, was reported missing on Dec. 6, 2019, from his home on Stantonsburg Road. He was known to spend time in the woods, officials said. Deputies and multiple search-and-rescue organizations searched the area for months but failed to find him.

The sheriff’s office said investigators found no signs of foul play.

While Rampey was missing, reported sightings were called in from as far away as Charlotte, but none of the leads panned out. In a news release, the sheriff’s office said law enforcement officials and family members received multiple tips during the investigation.

A hunter found the remains on Dec. 22 in what the sheriff’s office described as a “heavily wooded” area along a creek near Askew Road.” The area where they were found is about three miles from Rampey’s home, deputies said.