KANSAS CITY, Kan. — The family of a missing man from Johnson County, Kansas says his remains have been identified. However, they still don’t know what happened or how he died.
In June of 2021, a KDOT employee found Kyle Dunivan’s remains. Kansas City, Kansas Police say it was not an easy process to identify him. While his family is now able to put him to rest they’re still waiting for answers.
“Something happened, and I want to know,” Dunivan’s mother, Leah Sumner said.
Dunivan’s mother will always be connected to her son.
“I’m broke without him. I’m broken,” Sumner said.
In June of 2020, the 31-year-old stayed overnight at a co-worker’s house in KCK, but started calling family members needing a ride to work the next day. Sumner woke up to a blinking phone.
“He tried to call me seven times. His last call was to 911 where he stated help, they’re trying to hurt me. The phone call was disconnected,” Sumner said.
For a year they prayed for answers and held a balloon release in his memory. On June 23, 2021 at about 1 p.m., officers were called to 400 S. Bayard Ave., which is just north of Kansas Avenue and west of South 18th Street Expressway, on a report of possible skeletal human remains.
A KCK police spokesperson said the initial investigation indicates the person was male and has likely been deceased for several months or possibly longer. The remains were located near where Dunivan was last seen.
It took five months for his remains to be processed and tested through a state forensic lab. Kansas City, Kansas police say there was a backlog delaying the result.
“We want answers. Yes, we have him now. We have that closure, but we want the closure of what happened,” Dunivan’s great aunt, Jeanette Eaker said.
Sumner said the detective called her to say they are investigating, but can’t say her son was murdered. The department said the remains show no sign of foul play.
“He said we may never know how the events unfolded that day. Awful. There’re no words to describe it,” Sumner said.
The family hopes someone will come forward with information to help police.
“Please, please, so we can have that closure, please,” Sumner said.
“It hurts my heart. It hurts my heart to see her like that. It hurts,” Eaker said.
What hurts the family even more is they are having trouble paying for his funeral. Dunivan did not have life insurance and because his death isn’t considered a homicide funeral assistance isn’t available.
“There’s not any funds to do it and as any parent you want to give them the best. The best goodbye you can. So, I just want to give him the best,” Sumner said.
If you are able to help the Dunivan family with arrangements they set up a Gofundme. His funeral is scheduled for later this month.
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