Human remains found at Cape Lookout; search called off for missing soldier

Army SPC Enrique Roman-Martinez

The National Park Service has called off the extensive search for a Fort Bragg soldier missing at Cape Lookout National Seashore since May 22 — and has not commented on whether remains found in the area May 31 might be those of 21-year-old Enrique Roman-Martinez.

On May 23, active search efforts began at South Core Banks, around mile marker 46 for Roman-Martinez, who had been reported missing by his friends that evening after not being seen at his camp throughout the day.

Army SPC Enrique Roman-Martinez

Over a 10-day period, ground and aerial searchers covered South Core Banks, Shackleford Banks, and the immediate ocean and sound areas surrounding Roman-Martinez’s camp.

Very few clues have been discovered during the search efforts, the seashore said in a news release. Depending on the search area and day, team members encountered rainy, windy, and rough sea conditions.

Over the weekend, park rangers located human remains that had washed up on Shackelford Banks. The remains were turned over to the medical examiner’s office and are awaiting their determination and identification.

Also assisting Cape Lookout National Seashore Rangers has been the Army Criminal Investigation Command (CID), the United States Coast Guard (USCG), North Carolina Marine Patrol, Wayne County Sheriff’s Office Canine Team, and the Carteret County Sheriff’s Office.

In the absence of additional clues, active search operations have been suspended, the NPS said. Limited search activities may occur as new information or evidence presents itself.

Enrique Roman-Martinez is still a missing person and the investigation will continue in hopes of gaining further information of his whereabouts on the day of his disappearance. Park rangers would like to hear from anyone who may have had contact with Enrique Roman-Martinez. Please call the Carteret County Dispatch office at 252-726-1911.

Related story: Search continues for Fort Bragg solider missing at Cape Lookout National Seashore

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Kari Pugh is digital director for, Beach 104, 99.1 The Sound, 94.5 WCMS and News Talk 92.3 WZPR. Reach her at