NewsCovering Kentucky


Madison Co. Coroner Says Number Of Unclaimed Bodies On The Rise

Posted at 5:46 PM, Jan 08, 2019
and last updated 2019-01-08 17:46:16-05

MADISON COUNTY, Ky. (LEX 18) — Some county coroners are worried they could run out of room, and out of money, to deal with the unclaimed bodies across the commonwealth.

Madison County Coroner Jimmy Cornelison said a man was killed on train tracks two days ago with no identification on him. He believes that the victim may have been homeless. It is possible that no one is looking for the man.

Cornelison said it is happening time and time again and at some point, he is concerned there will be too many unclaimed bodies and not enough room to properly care for them or money enough to properly make arrangements for them.

“I don’t feel like I’m inundated, but I feel like I’m on that path,” he said.

He says it is in part due to the opioid epidemic causing death by overdose and the fact that he has the largest stretch of Interstate Highway 75 throughout the commonwealth.

Cornelison said he has an idea to alleviate some of his problems and is pushing hard for it. He’d like to make it a requirement of everyone applying for, or renewing, a driver’s license to put an emergency contact number of the back of the driver’s license.

Even with that system, you couldn’t ever overcome indifference.

“Even when I contact them and I say, ‘I have your loved one here,’ they don’t want anything to do with it,” he said.