A US Navy veteran whose body was found inside his apartment in Dallas, Texas, is believed to have lain dead there for three years, the Dallas County medical examiner’s office concluded.
His body was discovered during an investigation of apartment units whose tenants had not been using water in the DeSoto area complex.
Ronald Wayne White’s family said they had reported his absence to the authorities and to several different police departments on numerous occasions.
Because he traveled extensively as part of his job working for a defense contractor, multiple police departments told Ronald Wayne White’s family that they couldn’t treat it as a missing persons case.
According to the family they didn’t have enough money to hire private investigators.
His mother, Doris Stevens, who lives in Long Island in New York, said her son had regularly contacted her – but his calls ceased three years ago.
“My biggest question is, how in the world could my son have been dead in that apartment and nobody knows anything?” she asked on Dallas TV station.
Mr White’s third-floor modern apartment was located at the very north-west corner of the apartment complex, was well-insulated, and had all its windows closed and locked – possibly explaining how his body lay undiscovered for so long.
Pete Schulte, a detective with the DeSoto Police Department, said White’s rent was automatically deducted from his account once a month from an account into which his Navy retirement fund was regularly paid.
He added “The way he was found, the way the apartment was arranged and so forth, there was zero indication of foul play.”
More tests to determine the cause of death were due to be completed before the body was released to the family for a funeral.
Diabetes medication dating back to 2016 was found in the apartment, while Mr White’s dust-covered pick-up truck was discovered in the DeSoto Town Center parking garage.
Mr White, who would have been 51 in 2016, had worked as a defence contractor since leaving the US Navy. He lived alone after he and his wife divorced, and frequently travelled outside the US on business.