18 Bodies That Were Found Years After The Person Died

While people die every day, the manner in which they pass is not always the same. On this list are stories of people who died, only to have their bodies remain undiscovered for years. Some deaths go unnoticed due to the deceased’s extreme isolation. Others are deliberately concealed to avert a police investigation. In more rare circumstances, people die from unpredictable environmental conditions, and the bodies become naturally hidden. Whether it’s in an ancient tomb, a La-Z-Boy, or even a chimney, people inexplicably found the following bodies years after the initial deaths.

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  • 27 Boys Found Buried in Storage Locker

    In 1973, police found the bodies of 27 boys in a rented storage locker after the murder of Houston serial killer Dean Corll AKA “The Candy Man.” Corll had hired two teens - David Brooks and Elmer Henley - to assist him in the abduction, torture, and murder of local teen boys.

    After dozens of deaths, the accomplices admitted to law enforcement their participation in The Candy Man’s crimes. Henley, who shot and killed Corll, helped Houston police identify most of the discovered bodies. 

  • Mother and Daughter Discovered In Collapsing House

    In 2013, following up on complaints about the safety of a home in England, police officers discovered the bodies of Caroline Jessett, 50, and her mother, Pauline, 78. Investigators located Caroline’s body a week prior to finding her mother, who appeared mummified, in the bathroom. Medical examiners could not rule the cause of death for both women but believed they had passed naturally.

    Reportedly, Caroline suffered from mental illness and was reclusive. Examiners determined Pauline, also a known recluse, may have been dead for a year, although neighbors claim they had not seen the woman in decades.

  • Twin Skeletons Found in Chattanooga

    In 2014, Chattanooga Police discovered the skeletons of twin brothers Andrew and Anthony Johnson in their former residence. Authorities found the reclusive brothers, 63, in matching easy chairs. Medical examiners determined the Johnsons died of natural causes approximately three years prior - Anthony from heart disease and Andrew from diabetes shortly thereafter.

    The neighbors considered the pair eccentric and did not notice their absence. Reportedly, their sister tried to check on them in 2011 but could not gain entry into the home. 

  • Body Found Behind False Wall

    In 2013, a construction worker accidentally unearthed the remains of Joann Nichols, 55. Someone had hidden Nichols’s body behind a "false wall" in the basement of her former home in Poughkeepsie, New York. Nichols’s husband, James, had reported her as missing in 1985. The medical examiner determined the cause of death as blunt force trauma:  

    The body was skeletonized and the hands were tied with rope. …A large area of the right side of the skull was also missing.

    Investigators suspected James for Nichols’s murder, but he had passed shortly before the discovery of his wife.

  • Husband's Body Found 18 Years After His Death

    Reportedly, John and Leigh Ann Sabine abandoned their five children in New Zealand in 1969. The couple, under false names, quickly moved to Australia. When they returned to New Zealand in 1984 to see their children, the daughters reported them to police. The couple again relocated and settled in South Wales.  

    Leigh Ann died in 2015 from cancer. Reportedly, no one had seen John since 1997. After Leigh Ann’s death, authorities unearthed his remains from his wife’s garden in Beddau. Someone had wrapped his body in plastic sheets. Detectives determined his injuries were consistent with an assault and ruled the cause of death as blunt force trauma. Welsh authorities considered the deceased Leigh Ann as the primary suspect. 

  • Man Found Hanging After Eight Years

    In 2013, a new tenant in a Bussy-Saint-Georges building found the body of Thomas Ngin. Authorities determined Ngin, who was originally from Cambodia, died eight years prior in the apartment. Medical examiners ruled the cause of death as self-inflicted hanging.

    Ngin’s apartment was isolated within the complex, and his death remained unnoticed until the bank finally seized and sold his unit.