JERSEY CITY, N.J. (PIX11) — The body of a beloved Jersey City kindergarten teacher and mother of three was found in a shallow grave in Kearny, authorities said Wednesday, leaving a community in mourning and investigators searching for answers.

Luz Hernandez, 33, was found buried in a desolate industrial area of Kearny on Tuesday, officials said. The grim discovery came one day after Hernandez failed to show up for work at BelovED Community Charter School, spurring a police wellness check at her home a short walk from the Jersey City school.

The local medical examiner’s office is working to determine exactly how Hernandez died, and investigators have not publicly offered further information on the circumstances of her death.

Hernandez leaves behind three young children, two of whom attended the school where she taught. The school was closed Wednesday, but set to reopen Thursday.

Anyone with information is asked to contact the Office of the Hudson County Prosecutor at 201-915-1345 or to leave an anonymous tip at: All information will be kept confidential.