Remains found of man missing from Falmouth personal care home

Remains discovered near care home

vhoneycutt@herald-leader.comSeptember 6, 2011 

Larry Lee, 32, lived in a Falmouth facility as ward of state.

The human remains found near the Licking River on Saturday are that of a brain-injured man missing since last month from a Falmouth personal care home, according to Kentucky State Police detective Chris Jaskowiak.

Larry Lee, 32, walked away Aug. 4 from Falmouth Nursing Home, which is categorized by state officials as a personal care home. Personal care homes provide care for people who need some assistance but not full-time nursing care.

Lee had been a ward of the state for years as part of a severe brain-injury program. He had brain injuries, was schizophrenic, bipolar and diabetic.

Jaskowiak said no foul play was suspected, although the cause of death had not been determined.

Jaskowiak said the Northern Kentucky Medical Examiner's Office in Fort Thomas made the identification. Lee's sister Melissa Knight of Lebanon said Monday that dental records and skull X-rays helped make the confirmation.

The detective said bow hunters found Lee's body.

Although Lee reportedly had been spotted in Lexington, Knight said Monday that it appears that Lee ventured only a few miles from the personal care home.

"It's heartbreaking," she said. "He was only ... down the road."

Knight has said staff at the facility said they noticed Lee was gone Aug. 4 when they went to his room to give him medication. She said Monday it's not exactly clear when he went missing.

Knight said she thought the personal care home should have had more oversight of her brother. The Cabinet for Health and Family Services' Office of Inspector General has been investigating the disappearance, as have Falmouth police.

Administration officials were not at the home Monday. A nurse's aide who answered the phone said facility officials had no comment.

Lee's family had offered a $3,500 reward for information that led to finding him.

Staff from the state Division of Guardianship, which oversees wards of the state, had been walking the streets looking for Lee.

Reach Valarie Honeycutt Spears at (859) 231-3409 or 1-800-950-6397, Ext. 3409.

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