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Body Identified as Missing Mother of 8

January 11, 1986

The Los Angeles County coroner's office Friday said that the badly burned body of a woman found Sunday night in her car in Chatsworth has been identified as Esther Gaudet.

The San Fernando mother of eight had been missing for a month before the body was found.

An autopsy revealed that Gaudet, 52, died of asphyxiation and inhalation of toxic smoke, coroner's spokesman Bob Dambacher said. The time of death could not be pinpointed.

Gaudet, despondent over a recent divorce, committed suicide by dousing the car with lighter fluid and lighting a match after being dismissed from her job, police said.

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