The body of a missing McCreary County man, who was last seen in Laurel County on Sept. 10, was recovered from a pond on private property in Whitley County late Monday afternoon.
Whitley County Coroner Andy Croley pronounced John T. Smith, 38, dead at 5:30 p.m.
Croley said that it appears Smith’s body has been in the pond since about Sept. 10.
Family members were able to positively identify the remains Tuesday afternoon.
No foul play is suspected at this time. Croley is listing the cause of death as drowning and the manner of death as accidental pending toxicology results that won’t be known for several weeks.
There were no signs of trauma to the body.
Croley said the body was found in a pond off Marsee Trail, which is right off US25W, on private property on the Hart Farm about 5 p.m. Monday.
“The owner of the property noticed an object in the pond. He went to investigate, retrieved a neighbor and they confirmed that it was human remains,” Croley said.
They then contacted authorities.
Croley said that when he arrived at the scene, he saw the body floating in the pond.
“At that point I had conveyed we needed boats to make the retrieval. I had the boat to go around the perimeter to see probably where the person entered the water. You had a better vantage point from the water than from the land looking in the water,” Croley said.
Emergency workers soon found articles of clothing and other personal items on the bank near the spot where they think the victim may have entered the water, Croley said.
Officials don’t know why Smith was at the pond, Croley said.
The state medical examiner’s performed an autopsy Tuesday morning.
Croley and Kentucky State Police Trooper Matt Ridener are continuing the investigation. They were assisted at the scene by troopers from Post 11 in London, the Whitley County Sheriff’s Department, members of the Whitley County Coroner’s Office, members of the Woodbine and Oak Grove volunteer fire departments, Whitley County Emergency Management Director Danny Moses, and the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife.