HomeNewsSkull Displayed as Decor on Fireplace Mantle Solves Mystery of Man Missing Since 2012

Skull Displayed as Decor on Fireplace Mantle Solves Mystery of Man Missing Since 2012

by Chris Haney
Photo by Frédéric Soltan/Corbis via Getty Images

On Monday, Tennessee officials in Morgan County confirmed that a missing man since 2012 is dead after police discovered his skull outfitted with a pair of sunglasses on top of a fireplace mantel.

Officials have not detailed how they learned about the skull. Additionally, police have not said why it was sitting in a home on a fireplace mantel as decoration or who put it there adding sunglasses as an accessory.

District Attorney Russell Johnson released a statement about the skull in a Facebook post. In 2019, an unnamed individual allegedly found the skull and placed it on their fireplace mantle. Subsequently, the person added sunglasses onto the skull. A year later, someone notified the local sheriff’s office of the human remains and authorities took it in for DNA testing.

Skull Discovery Leads to More Questions About Tennessee Man’s Disappearance

In September 2012, 79-year-old Junior Willie McCann’s family reported him as missing. Fast forward eight years later as the mystery skull underwent DNA testing. The Knox County Regional Forensics Center and the UT Department of Anthropology ran tests using DNA from McCann’s family members.

The final results confirmed that the skull belonged to McCann. The evidence is an important link to the 2012 unsolved mystery of McCann’s disappearance. McCann lived in the Gobey area of Morgan County, which is also where his remains were supposedly discovered. Since Sept. 9, 2012, McCann has been missing.

“Speculation and rumor has been that Junior Willie McCann was possibly killed by a family member who is now deceased as well,” wrote Johnson in the post.

Johnson said authorities conducted “an extensive search” of the Gobey area. He said they thoroughly searched the area “according to the man who supposedly found it.” However, officials have not given any details of further discoveries.

Morgan County Sheriff Wayne Potter has asked for the public’s help in solving the eight-year investigation. Potter asks that anyone with information on McCann’s disappearance call the sheriff’s office at 423-346-6262.

[H/T People]