The Camden County Sheriff’s Office confirmed that a deceased person found in Linn Creek last October is a Licking man. Gary Kaeter was last seen alive in 2016.
Kaeter, 62, was reported missing after last being seen on May 30, 2016, in Texas County. Days later, the Missouri State Highway Patrol reportedly found and towed his car from Highway Y in Linn Creek.
“At that time, there was no evidence of Kaeter’s whereabouts and no signs of suspicious activity in or near the vehicle,” the Camden County Sheriff’s Office wrote in a press release. “MSHP troopers later returned to the area but found no additional evidence during their investigation.”
In October 2021, two local residents were reportedly looking for arrowheads in Linn Creek, when they found what they thought to be human remains at the bottom of a steep ravine, under a rock crevice. Investigators found skeletal human remains and tattered clothing on the scene.
Authorities also got in touch with a family member of Kaeter’s, who was able to give a DNA sample. It came back as a positive match, according to Camden County Sgt. Scott Hines who said it took 10 months to identify the remains because of the identification process.
“It turns out his nearest relatives lived in San Diego, Calif.,” Hines said. “So we had to coordinate with San Diego Police Department to collect a DNA sample from the nearest-living relative for that sample to us, repackage that sample and then forward that sample to a [Virginia] lab.”
Investigators do not suspect foul play, but they said the cause of death is undetermined.