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Reporter's Notebook

March 30, 2013

Missing woman case was cracked by sawmill owner

Some owners of rural tracts of land visit their property only infrequently. Richard Hayner of the Chenango County town of Plymouth is not among them.

It was Hayner who located the body of Jennifer Ramsaran off Center Road in the town of Pharsalia on Feb. 26.

While it was a discovery that confirmed the worst fears of her sister, JoAnn Buff of the Schoharie County community of Middleburgh, and her parents, Carol and Thomas Renz of New Berlin, it also provided a measure of closure for them and gave police important new evidence in the case.

Commenting for the first time since he located the body, Hayner, 54, said in an interview: “It does help to put some things to rest. There are three kids who had been looking for their mother. Hopefully, finding the body will help resolve some of the issues that have been in question.”

Hayner, the father of Chenango County Sheriff’s Deputy Kelly Hayner, operates a sawmill in the woods off Center Road. He said he believes in maintaining the property and keeping a close eye on it.

“I check on my lot two or three times a week,” he said. “I also do snowshoeing on it. I walk along the road and I walk all along the woods. It’s important to be very observant of your surroundings.”

Jennifer Ramsaran was last seen alive Dec. 11. Her husband, Ganesh “Remy” Ramsaran told police his 36-year-old wife left the family home in New Berlin that day to go Christmas shopping at a Syracuse mall.

Ganesh Ramsaran also confirmed in interviews with The Daily Star that he had an a brief affair with one of his wife’s closest friends. He said he has also provided that information to police when he was interrogated. He said his extramarital affair was irrelevant to his wife’s disappearance. He also said he was concerned with what he said was his wife’s involvement with online games that she played with strangers.

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