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(NECN: John Moroney) - These dogs are looking for the body of Melanie Melanson. The teenage girl disappeared in 1989. Still, after more than two decades, her family hopes that one day she'll be brought home.
"We have a beautiful day today. We're just hoping and praying that today's the day, once and full all," said Karen Montgomery, Melanie's aunt.
The young girl was last seen with a group of friends in the woods in Woburn, Massachusetts -- days before her 15th birthday. Two grand juries have been convened, suspects have been interviewed and there have been numerous searches like this one. Yet no one has been charged. And there's been no clues regarding what might have happened to the Woburn High School freshman.
"Right now today, it's all about finding Melaine, bring her home," said private detective Michael Garrigan.
Garrigan has been on the case almost from the beginning. He decided to bring in the dogs after soil samples that were taken piqued his interest.
"They are just hitting every place that has been hit before and others that have never been hit before," said Garrigan.
The woods were Melaine went missing have been searched before. But new leads in the case prompted another search of the woods with dogs.
"The dogs are trained and certified to a standard where the are able to recognize human decomposition scent,' said private investigator Alan Tate. "These are some of the best dogs around."
The dogs -- four of them in all -- are from Connecticut Canine Search and Rescue. The volunteer group spent the day at three different locations, including the woods behind the McDonald's on Montvale Avenue which investigators described as significant after the dogs were done searching.