A Pennsylvania woman claims to have stumbled upon the body of her long-presumed-missing grandson in the attic of her home.
Zanobia Richmond, 66, of Erie County says that a “thump” from the top floor of her residence on Wednesday led to her discovering the body of 21-year-old DyQuain Rogers, according to the New York Post. Rogers, who was said to have gone missing on November 1, 2014, had become mummified over the period of time due to the almost-complete sealing of the room.
“The [remains] were mummified,” Erie County Coroner Lyell Cook confirmed to the Post. “The lack of airflow and the fact that the attic wasn’t vented [proved to be] optimal conditions for [both] dehydration and mummification [of Rogers’ body].”
DyQuain’s body was said to have somehow fallen against the attic door, which triggered Richmond into searching where the noise had come from. During the initial police investigation into his disappearance, law enforcement searched all over the grandmother’s home, both inside and out, but later claimed that they could not recall whether or not the attic had been checked as well.
Because of this, along with the clothing that covered the remains, it is being theorized by both Erie police and Richmond that Rogers, who was a constant guest in the home, may have doubled back to Richmond’s at some point after the search.
“All indications are that [Rogers] wasn’t there when our guys were there,” Erie Police Chief Donald Dacus remarked. “He returned at some point wearing different clothing [from earlier that day].”
Along with the uncertainty of the search point, it is highly doubtful that an official cause of death will ever be made for Rogers due to the decomposition of his body.
“They said they cannot do an autopsy because there is nothing to do an autopsy on,” DyQuain’s aunt, Erica Jeffries-Jordan, relayed to Erie Times-News.
Incidentally, past dental records have been requested to fully confirm the late man’s identity. However, Jeffries-Jordan, who initially believed that her nephew had simply left town, has seemingly come to terms with the notion of the search being over.
“I did all I could do,” she said Thursday. “I must accept it as it is.”
Cook strongly believes that despite the gruesome find, Rogers’ death was one of his own making.
“[There’s] nothing to suggest anything other than suicide,” the coroner explained.
After the finding of the body, Richmond reiterated to reporters that on that fateful afternoon, she witnessed DyQuain receiving a call on his cell phone. After hanging up, he left the house with a back pack in tow, but left behind the cellular device, which was brand new, as well as his wallet and his keys. He never mentioned where he was going, and did not seem to be upset or angry when he departed the residence.
Furthermore, Jeffries-Jordan says that her nephew often excitedly spoke about either signing up for the Navy or finding work in the health field as a emergency medical technician (EMT). As a 2012 graduate of the Career and Technical School, a volunteer at Belle Valley Hose Co. in Millcreek Township, and an assistant manager at a nearby Little Caesars restaurant, it seemed like suicide would be the furthest thing from Rogers’ mind.
“If you are going to throw your life away,” she posed to the Times back in March, “[then] why are you [planning] to do all these things?”
Nonetheless, there were apparent troubles that the young man was facing. A Facebook status message posted on October 31, just five days before DyQuain’s disappearance, expressed in no uncertain terms that things weren’t as perfect as they seemed.
“I’ve been having the worst luck lately,” it reads.
[Featured Image by ronstik/iStock]