UFC fighter Walt Harris celebrates stepdaughter in touching IG post

Star UFC fighter Walter Harris posted a touching tribute on Instagram to his slain stepdaughter, Aniah Blanchard just one day after her body was found. (Photo courtesy of Walt Harris)

On a day when families are supposed to come together and celebrate gratitude, UFC fighter Walter Harris is unfortunately dealing with an incredible loss.

According to CBS News, the Department of Forensic Sciences in Alabama confirmed on Monday that the human remains found in a wooded area in Macon County are that of Harris’ 19-year old stepdaughter, Aniah Blanchard. The young woman had been missing for several weeks.

Harris finally took to Instagram to publicly express his thoughts about the confirmation of Blanchard’s passing.

“My sweet baby girl… I just wanna thank you for helping me change my life for the better… For teaching me how to be a man and a better father! For being my biggest fan win, lose, or draw! For always knowing what to say to put a smile on my face and lift me up when I was down and wanted to give up,” he wrote.

READ MORE: UFC star turns to public for help finding missing 19-year-old stepdaughter

“This pain is unbearable… I know you want me to be strong but it so hard baby it so hard. I’m gonna find a way I promise you I will. Right now nothing makes sense and I’m so lost. I just want you back. I hope I made you proud… I’m gonna keep going daddy just needs time. I love you so much.”

Blanchard was last heard from on Oct. 23 in Auburn, Ala. Walter Harris used his platform as a UFC fighter to bring further awareness to her disappearance by using social media and the hashtag #FindAniah.

CBS reports that blood was found in Blanchard’s car and the case has now been labeled a homicide investigation; three men are now in custody in connection with the case, but authorities have yet to determine a cause and manner of death.

READ MORE: Suspect arrested in kidnapping of UFC fighter’s stepdaughter

At the convenience store where Blanchard was last seen, a witness told investigators that 29-year-old Ibraheem Yazeed, who is in custody, forced the teen into her car. He is being charged with kidnapping and is currently being held without bond.

Our thoughts remain with the Harris and Blanchard families during this difficult time.