The BC Coroners' Service says the woman reported her grandson, Dante Ponzanetti, missing to Vancouver Police in June 2003.
Dr. Bill Inkster, acting manager of the service's Identification and Disaster Response Unit, says a hiker discovered the skeletal remains in November 2004 but they could not be identified despite comprehensive forensic analysis.
He says the bones have now been linked to Ponzanetti through a match on a database of DNA from missing persons' family members.
Inkster says the coroners' service database is the only such one in Canada and that privacy issues involving living donors have prevented the development of similar databases elsewhere in the country.
He says Ponzanetti was from Thunder Bay, Ont., and that the circumstances surrounding his death are still being investigated.