Lincoln County coroner identifies human remains found

Published 11:23 am Thursday, April 4, 2019

MCKINNEY — Human remains found under a railroad trestle last week have been identified as a Lincoln County man who was reported missing in December last year.

Coroner Farris Marcum said the human remains, which were discovered on Thursday, March 28, have been positively identified as Patrick Wayne Cook, 57, of Hustonville.

“We did x-rays and it appears he’s got broken vertebrae in his neck and his back,” Marcum said Friday. “It appears that he fell off the bridge.”

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Marcum said Cook’s death has been ruled accidental.

The Kentucky State Police, Richmond Post, were called just before 1 p.m on Thursday in reference to possible human remains that were located under the Norfolk Southern Bridge off of Tunnel Creek Road in a rural area of Lincoln County.

According to a State Police release, KSP Post 7 investigators responded to the scene and located the remains of a man that had severely decomposed. The remains were removed by the Lincoln County Coroner and taken to the State Medical Examiner’s Office in Frankfort for identification and an autopsy. Cook had been reported as missing in December to the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office.

Lincoln County law enforcement, as well as Kentucky State Police, were on scene for several hours.

Sheriff Curt Folger said Cook was reported missing by his family on Dec. 17, 2018.

“His sister told me they thought he went to Lexington because he had been talking about how God had told him to go help the homeless,” Folger said.

Folger said he received information that Cook had gone by someone’s house a few months ago, and appeared to be under the influence of drugs at the time.

“The clothes that he had on was identified by a witness as being what he put on the night he went by that guy’s residence,” he said. The clothes described by the witness matched the clothes at the scene last week, Folger said.

The coroner said due to the condition of the remains, it is hard to determine the exact time of death.

“It’s hard to determine due to the condition of the remains we found,” Marcum said. “It’s been out in the elements, you know, rain and sun, different environmental factors.”