Authorities say a Schaumburg woman reported missing on New Year's Day was found dead Monday night in the trunk of her car in Chicago.
Sureel Dabawala, 34, failed to return to her northwest suburban home on Dec. 30, a flier from Schaumburg police said. Her family reported her missing on Jan. 1, telling officials that they were concerned about her well-being due to an unspecified medical condition.
She was last seen driving her 2011 white Lexus sedan - the car in which she was discovered dead in the trunk at around 8:34 p.m. Monday night, according to police. Authorities said the vehicle was parked in the 200 block of North Kilpatrick Avenue in Chicago's West Garfield Park neighborhood on the city's West Side.
The Cook County medical examiner's office could not immediately confirm the fatality and further details were not available.
Dabawala's ex-boyfriend Joshua Zarranda said in a phone interview Tuesday that the two had broken up about a year ago but that he still cared for her.
"She was a lovely girl that cared about her family, her loved ones," he said, calling her death the worst possible outcome.
"She loved life, she loved going out, enjoying time with friends, going to movies…enjoyed everything like any other girl,” he said. "She taught me a lot, she gave me strength, strength to look forward to life.”
Zarranda said both of Dabawala's parents are doctors who run a medical center in Schaumburg. Family members of hers at the medical center confirmed their relation to Dabawala but declined to comment Tuesday.
A death investigation into the circumstances remained ongoing, according to Chicago police.