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Woman in crash was killed

Searchers on Monday found the body of a mother of four who vanished after an early December car crash that killed her husband, solving a mystery that began with the discovery of her slipper in the snow and footprints leading away from the car.

The body of Tanya Shannon, 40, was found in a LaSalle County field about three-quarters of a mile from where she and her husband crashed into a light pole while returning during a snowstorm from a holiday party in the early morning hours of Dec. 5. Dale Shannon was found dead behind the wheel, and his blood-alcohol content was found to be 0.266, or more than three times the state's legal driving limit of 0.08. An autopsy found he died of spinal injuries.

A sheriff's deputy who discovered the wreck found one of Tanya Shannon's slippers in the snow and footprints leading away from the car, but no other trace of her. Searchers spent days combing through the flat, snowy terrain on horseback, on foot and in helicopters, probing snowbanks with poles and sweeping through soybean fields with metal detectors. The search resumed Monday because conditions had improved.

An autopsy was scheduled for later in the week.

The Shannons' four daughters, who range in age from 4 to 15 years old, have been staying with family.

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