KOMO News has tracked down a family member in Eastern Washington who is now in touch with the Lewis County coroner's office to see if the families are a match.
The remains were discovered by recycling employees who had found what appeared to be an ornate ceramic base to some type of item. Inside the base were three labeled plastic bags containing the cremated remains of three individuals.
The recycling company notified the Coroner's Office, which determined the ceramic base could have been part of a sundial or some other type of decorative object.
Further investigation revealed the names, dates of birth and dates of death of the three individuals, along with the funeral home involved in the cremation. But due to the passage of time, the funeral home no longer had accurate records about the individuals' next of kin.
The three deceased individuals are
• Marjorie Boyer; born April 16, 1926; died Feb. 4, 2004.
• Wayne Nesteby; date of birth unavailable; died Sept. 26, 1997.
• Emmett Robert Nesteby; born Feb. 12, 1923; died Feb. 8, 2000.
"Due to two of the decedents having the same last name, we are assuming all decedents are from the same family," Lewis County Coroner Warren McLeod said.
It appears that the sundial or other decorative object had been thrown out and it is quite possible the person who did so was not aware that the object contained cremated remains, McLeod said.
Originally, the only contact that had been located for the family is Emmett Nesteby's daughter, who officials could only find a Portland address from 2000 that is no longer valid.