BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WIAT) — Forty-seven years after he went missing while on the way back to school at Auburn University, Kyle Clinkscales has now officially been found.
On Dec. 8, 2021, a 1974 Pinto Runabout belonging to the LaGrange, Georgia, native was found in a creek in Cusetta, Alabama. Inside the car were human remains, mostly consisting of pieces of bone and some tissue.
For over a year, law enforcement waited to hear from the Georgia Bureau of Investigation on whether the remains found in the car were those of Clinkscales, who was 22 years old when he first went missing.
On Sunday, Troup County (Georgia) Coroner Erin Hackley announced a major development in the case.
“On February 19, 2023, the Troup County Coroner’s Office was notified that the remains have been properly identified as Kyle Wade Clinkscales,” a press release from Hackley stated. “At this time the cause and manner of death have not yet been determined and the case remains under investigation by the Troup County Sheriff’s Office.
Martha Morrison, Clinkscales’ aunt who lives in Oxford, Alabama, received the news from Hackley Sunday and said that after decades of unanswered questions, the family finally has some sense of closure.
“I am so grateful for closure in this and that he can finally rest in peace between his mom and dad,” Morrison said.
Morrison added while she never had any doubts the remains were her nephew’s, she hopes that the cause of his death will one day be determined.
Although police have investigated several people in connection with Clinkscales’ disappearance, no one has ever been charged in the case.
Following his disappearance, Clinkscales’ parents John and Louise worked tirelessly to try to find him, including writing a book about his case. John died in 2007 while Louise died in January 2021, nearly a year before Clinkscales’ car was found.
Morrison said she has made arrangements to have Clinkscales’ remains sent to a funeral home in LaGrange and to have a memorial soon. She plans to have his remains cremated and buried with his parents.