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Tanner, Alexander, and Andrew Skelton

‘I miss their voices’: Jailed father of missing Skelton brothers speaks out for first time in six years

A Michigan father who claimed he gave his three sons to a family more than seven years ago said in a jailhouse interview that he regrets his decision and misses his boys.

Speaking with WDIV from an Ionia County prison, John Skelton cried as he recounted how he gave his sons, Andrew, 9, Alexander, 7, and Tanner, 5, to two women and a man who would take them to live on a farm in Ohio. At the time, John was entangled in a bitter custody dispute with the boys’ mother, who he accused of being abusive toward their children.

“I miss their voices,” he said.

The brothers were last seen alive on November 26, 2010, in the backyard of their father’s Morenci home. Though they were never found, police announced in December that they’ve recovered a box in Missoula, Montana, containing the remains of three young children.

READ More: Seven years and still no answers: What happened to the Skelton Brothers?

As CrimeOnline previously reported, the remains were transported to the University of North Texas for DNA testing. However, the process is expected to take months as the remains must be checked for matches with missing persons cases then sent to a crime lab and entered into the National Missing and Unidentified Persons System.

John also recalled the last night he spent with the boys. He claimed he made fried chicken and a cake for Andrew’s birthday before eating dinner and watching a karate movie. Later that night, a van arrived to pick up his sleeping sons to take them to an “underground sanctuary,” the father said.

John Skelton
John Skelton [Image: Michigan Department of Corrections]
John was sentenced to 10 to 15 years in prison in September 2011, after pleading no contest to unlawful imprisonment. To this day, he has never faced murder charges in connection with the boys’ probable deaths.

READ More: Have the Skelton boys been found? Cleaning crew finds skeletal remains of three children

The father-of-three told WDIV that he spent most of his incarceration in segregation but was recently moved to protective custody. Despite this, he supposedly cried during the interview because the reporter was the first person to visit him.

[Featured Image: Tanner, Andrew, and Alexander Skelton/Facebook]