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Body of missing NJ 19-year-old Rachel Oakes found along river

Rachel Oakes
Rachel Oakes (Old Bridge Police)

EDISON — The body of an Old Bridge woman missing since January was found on Sunday.

The body of Rachel Oakes, 19, was discovered “in the vicinity of the Raritan River” in this township, said Middlesex County Prosecutor’s Office spokesman James O’Neill in an email, adding that her family was notified.

O’Neill offered no other details, including how her body was discovered, how she died or if her death is considered suspicious.

A memorial service will be held on Saturday, March 18, from 5 to 9 p.m. at the Michael Hegarty & John Vincent Scalia Home for Funerals and Cremation Services in Old Bridge.

Oakes’ car was found by State Police on Jan. 10 along the Garden State Parkway near the Driscoll Bridge.

The bridge crosses the Raritan between Sayreville and the Keasbey section of Woodbridge, which is about 2 miles downstream from the Edison border.

The case had chilling parallels to the disappearance of Sarah Stern, a 19-year-old woman from Neptune City whose car was found on the Route 35 bridge between Belmar and Neptune City in December.

Two months later, Stern’s prom date, Preston Taylor, was charged with helping to throw her body off the bridge while friend Liam McAtasney is charged with strangling Stern at her home during the course of a robbery. Stern’s body has not been found.

Contact reporter Dan Alexander at

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