On Friday, the medical examiner’s office announced that the remains belonged to Norris Milton Dove Jr., who went missing almost three years ago from his Calhoun home. Someone who was collecting aluminum cans along the roadway found the skeleton around 10:15 a.m. Wednesday.
Sgt. Dana Pierce with Cobb Police said the medical examiner’s office identified the remains as Dove through family members who matched surgical procedure marks that were found on the bones of the remains.
The medical examiner’s office also reported that there were no obvious signs of trauma to the remains, but further investigations will determine an exact cause of death, Pierce said. He could not say when that would be determined.
“We will wait to hear the cause and manner of the death, and that will direct our investigation further,” Pierce said. “If it is natural causes or there is no sign of foul play, then we will go on what we’ve been told by the (girlfriend) and close out the case with Calhoun authorities.”
Pierce also said that it wouldn’t be “unusual” for the remains of someone to have been in that area along I-75 where Dove was found for years without being discovered.
Dove was last seen by his girlfriend on Aug. 11, 2009, when he was 47 years old, according to Lt. Tony Pyle with the Calhoun Police Department, who has been on the case since it was first reported.
“This guy was known to leave home months at a time and stay with friends and family members, and according to his girlfriend, he was known to stay in homeless shelters or woods,” Pyle said. “He also had numerous health issues and took daily medication and was known to not take said medication when he was on the road.”
Pyle declined to give details about what health issues Dove had.
He also said that from initial interviews with the family in 2009, that Dove was headed to Buford when he left his home that day, which is where his mother lives.
“There is some discrepancy here,” Pyle said. “One report said he left walking from Calhoun and the other said he was driven by his girlfriend to Cobb County to the bus station … not 100 percent sure if he was leaving here going to the bus station.”
Additionally, Pyle said that when Dove initially went missing, they didn’t believe foul play had anything to do with his disappearance.
“There were no indicators that anyone had attacked or abducted him,” he said.
Dove’s family has been notified of the discovery by Cobb Police, and Pyle himself has been trying to get in contact with Dove’s girlfriend.
“I’ve been keeping in contact with his girlfriend pretty much throughout the whole time,” he said. “She has been calling about once a month if I hadn’t called her.”