Deputies: Body found in 79-year-old missing woman's submerged car

Rose Bruce vanished after shift at Walmart in Ormond Beach

ORMOND BEACH, Fla. - A car belonging to a missing Volusia County woman was pulled out of a pond Thursday with a body inside.

Rose Bruce, 79, of Ormond Beach has been missing since Monday, but it's not yet known if the body is that of the missing woman.

Investigators confirmed the body found in the car is that of an adult female, but a positive identification could not be determined at the scene.  An autopsy is scheduled for Friday.

Bruce's car was found submerged in an Ormond Beach pond at the corner of Williamson Boulevard and Hand Avenue.

The pond is adjacent to a parking lot across the street from Bruce's San Marco apartment complex.

Florida Highway Patrol investigators said for an unknown reason, Bruce's car was heading down an access road in the parking lot. The driver apparently swerved to avoid a parked trailer and drove into the pond.

Bruce was last seen leaving the Walmart where she worked around 10:15 p.m. Monday. She was supposed to return an hour later to pick up her daughter-in-law, but never showed up.

Deputies released video of Bruce walking out to her car in the parking lot of the store and driving away.

"It's been hectic," said Kim Parks, who worked with Bruce for the past seven years. "Everybody's just hoping and praying for the best and hoping and praying for the best for the family."

Parks and several other co-workers looked on as Bruce's car was brought to the surface. Many of her co-workers were in disbelief over what has happened and concerned for Bruce's children and grandchildren.

"What is the family going through? What questions are they asking?" said Parks. "They don't have answers. It's hard as a friend, as a family friend, it's hard as a co-worker, but it's got to be even worse on them."

Parks described Bruce as a strong and sharp woman. It is unknown if she may have suffered from a medical condition. Troopers say it appears the driver tried to get out of the vehicle, but was unable to do so.

Although a positive identification has not been made, the Volusia County Sheriff's Office says it has ended its missing persons case involving Bruce and does not suspect foul play.

On Tuesday, the Florida Department of Law Enforcement issued a Silver Alert. The family had also launched a Facebook page to help find her.

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