They feared the worst, that he was one of serial killer John Wayne Gacy's victims.
Tonight, they're finally getting closure.
When Phyllis and Ray Noe got a phone call Monday....
"He called and said when he said he had other news,I thought right then, it wasn't going to be good. It's been too long."
Their son, Daniel, missing for 34 years.
"He liked to travel on bicycle all over the country," says Ray Noe. "He would always let us know when he changed plans."
Daniel was working out west
About to return home to finish school.
Just one credit shy of graduating.
"On September 30, 1978 he called and said he was on his way back, he'd see us in two weeks."
They never saw their son again.
Earlier this year, the family released DNA to the Cook County Sheriff's office when they learned investigators were trying to identify Gacy's remaining victims.
Gacy killed at least thirty three people in the 70's.
Daniel went missing in the summer of 1978.
"You're always wondering if he'd show up," says Phyllis Noe.
Last week, their fears finally subsided.
Daniel's DNA matched remains, found more than three decades later in the mountains of Utah.
He wasn't the victim of a serial killer.
"That was good, that was real good. That would've been hard to take," says Phyllis.
Any news...still hard to take.
For parents who never really gave up hope.
"Not really, completely. But you know, probably 95 percent of the hope is gone," says Ray. "But you always have that little glimmer."
But now, peace.
After more than thirty years of "what-ifs"
"I feel grateful. Glad to know it's over with. That he didn't suffer too much," adds Phyllis. "I think he was doing what he wanted to do. He was climbing a mountain."
Services for Daniel Noe are set for Monday from five to seven at Deiter's Funeral Home in Washington.
Burial is Tuesday at 10 a.m.