WASHINGTON -- Sen. Amy Klobuchar honored Jacob Wetterling's family on the Senate floor Thursday, calling the victim's mother, and her former political opponent, "a woman of unbelievable courage."

Klobuchar said Wetterling went beyond "hanging tight" to her family in light of her 11 year-old son's disappearance and saved more lives by becoming a missing children's advocate.

Jacob Wetterling went missing 27 years ago in rural Stearns County. Earlier this week, kidnapper Danny Heinrich confessed to sexually assaulting and killing the boy and led police to his remains.

"I want to personally recognize Patty for her strength and her courage and her grace," said Klobuchar of Wetterling, who briefly challenged Klobuchar in the DFL primary for her Senate seat. "She has kept this hope alive but what's amazing about it is she's saved other lives."

Klobuchar and Sen. Al Franken plan on writing a Senate resolution honoring the family.