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‘Badly Decomposed’ Human Remains Found Over 3 Decades Ago Identified as Man Who Went Missing in Niagara Falls

Authorities have announced that the remains belonged to Vincent C. Stack of Buffalo, N.Y., who disappeared in late 1990

<p>NamUs</p> Vincent C. Stack, whose remains were found off the shore of Lake Ontario in 1992

NamUs

Vincent C. Stack, whose remains were found off the shore of Lake Ontario in 1992
  • Police in New York have identified a set of human remains that were found on the shore of Lake Ontario in 1992

  • The Oswego County Sheriff's Office said the remains belonged to Vincent C. Stack of Buffalo, N.Y., who disappeared around Dec. 4, 1990

  • Stack's remains traveled about 15 miles to the mouth of the river and more than 130 miles across Lake Ontario before reaching shore, according to the OCSO

Human remains found off the shore of Lake Ontario in 1992 have finally been identified.

The Oswego County Sheriff's Office announced on April 2 that remains found in 1992 near what is now the Novelis Plant belonged to Vincent C. Stack of Buffalo, N.Y., who vanished around Dec. 4, 1990.

The medical examiner’s office said the individual appeared to have died between six months and five years before his body was discovered, according to the OCSO.

Stack was 40 years old when he went missing at Niagara Falls State Park 34 years ago, according to the National Missing and Unidentified Persons System (NamUS) database.

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Stack is "believed to have gone over" Niagara Falls, according to the OCSO. His remains traveled about 15 miles to the mouth of the river and more than 130 miles across Lake Ontario before reaching shore.

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Authorities have not released an official cause or manner of Stack's death. The OCSO said it has notified Stack’s family of the identification.

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Initial efforts to identify the remains, which were “badly decomposed and mostly skeletal,” were unsuccessful. But attempts to identify the remains resumed in April 2022 and a new DNA sample was taken.

In February 2024, the sample “was found to be a familial match to DNA collected from” Stack’s family members.

The OSCO thanked NamUS Regional Program Specialist Brian Nisbet and Detective Constable Sara Mummery of the Niagara Regional Police Service in Ontario for their assistance with the case.

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Mummery joined the case in 2022 and helped obtain the new DNA sample that led to Stack’s identification, according to the sheriff’s office.

Both Mummery and Nisbet “were a driving force in bringing closure in this case,” the OSCO added.

The OCSO hopes for a similar outcome in an unidentified remains case from 1983, which the department is “actively” investigating.

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