Unclaimed remains: Sometimes a name, sometime only a number

This information – listed on the Pierce County Medical Examiner’s website – is all that’s know of the 23 people whose cremated remains were scattered Thursday on Puget Sound:


Aki, Lily (case No. 10-0236) – Died Feb. 21, 2010, in Tacoma; 79 years old. No known next-of-kin.

Bidwell, Robin (case No. 03-1175) – Cremated Sept. 5, 1997, in Soquel, California. No known next-of-kin. Found in Spanaway by children playing on the side of the road on Oct. 25, 2003.

Ducker, Kenneth Earl (case No. 10-1649) – Died Feb. 22, 2010. From Washington State; homeless; 44 years old. Mother and brother are deceased, and father is possibly deceased as well. Ducker was single with no children.

Gleason, Heidi (case No. 10-0994) – Died April 12, 2009, in Spokane. Daughter notified of death and requested the remains be mailed to her in Arizona. Remains were found behind seat of pickup truck owned by daughter’s boyfriend. He had taken the remains to keep them safe for her when the airport wouldn’t let her board a flight with them. The county has been unable to locate her since.

Hamm-Schank, Lana (case No. 12-0209) – Died on Sept. 7, 2008, in Federal Way. Cremation was authorized by daughter whose whereabouts are now unknown. Has other children and a husband listed but attempts to locate next-of-kin unsuccessful. Remains were found in a suitcase in a store parking lot in Bonney Lake in summer 2011. Was found with two urns, one smaller than the other. Smaller urn could be a pet.

Laschet, Song Hui (case No. 10-1401) – Died Oct. 22, 2010, in Olympia; 62 years old. Widower with no children. No living next-of-kin in the United States and unknown if any are living in Korea.

Minick, William (presumed name, case No. 01-0055) – Remains found July 10, 1997, in a Tacoma house formerly owned by the wife, who is now deceased. No info on next-of-kin, who are reportedly estranged.

Nichols, William J. (case No. 09-1333) – Died Oct. 16, 2009, in Tacoma; 76 years old. No known next-of-kin.

Orr, Eugene (presumed name, case No. 01-0056) – Died Nov. 20, 1984, in Portland. Remains found in Spanaway on Jan. 9, 1988. County has been unable to locate son to return remains.

Pierson, Lena Geralden (presumed name, case No. 05-0680) – Died Apr. 22, 1995, and cremated Apr. 28, 1995, in Las Vegas. Found on a porch in Tacoma in 2005 with accompanying note that read, “Someone left this on my porch! I have no explanation other than that! Please do what needs to be done. Thankx.”

Placio, Mario Hernandez (case No. 07-0555) – No date of death or cremation information. No next-of-kin found. Found in a hotel room in Fife in 2007.

Reese, Michael W. (case No 12-1683) – Presumed to have died Dec. 6, 2012, in Lakewood; 54 years old. No available information on the whereabouts of his brother.

Schlereth, Sabine (case No. 10-0922) – Died July 15, 2010. From Renton; 46 years old. Unable to contact estranged daughter in Wyoming, ill sister in Germany who doesn’t speak English, uncle who has had no contact since 1968 or son whose whereabouts are unknown.

Serpa, Robert (case No. 10-0435) – Died Apr. 7, 2007, in California. Children had custody and intended to spread on a mountain, but remains were instead found abandoned.

Skinner , Lorna Maye (case No. 11-0130) – Presumed to have died Jan. 25, 2011, in Tacoma; homeless; 74 years old. Grandson indicated he wanted to claim remains but there was no contact from him. Brother in Minnesota was notified but has not made contact.

Spear, Ann Marie (case No. 11-1264) – Died Sep. 11, 2011, in Spanaway; 74 years old. Son and niece notified of death but are unable to claim remains.

Wheeler, Norman (case No. 07-0920) – Died July 28, 2004, in Kent. Cremation paid for by King County. No other details known.


Case No. 01-0054 – Found Jan.8, 1996, on Anderson Island with other items abandoned after a burglary. Remains didn’t belong to the person who was burglarized. Found in a small container indicating remains are possibly a child or pet.

Case No. 01-0057 – Found Aug. 12, 1999, in a marble container on the steps of a church in Tacoma at Fifth and South G streets.

Case No. 04-1126 – Found in a Pierce County field in 2003. Tag indicates remains were cremated in Richmond, Virginia.

Case No. 06-0999 – Found Aug. 11, 2006. Tag with the name of “Josephine” indicates the individual died Aug. 2, 1996. Cremated by Wiggen and Sons in Seattle on Aug. 6, 1996. Efforts to obtain additional information have been unsuccessful.

Case No. 10-0436 – Found in rental house in Puyallup in 2009. No other information known.

Case No. 11-0914 – Found on the kitchen windowsill by the new owner of a house in July 2011. Believed to belong to a woman who had lived at that location prior, but has since died. Remains may be that of her mother.