Remains found in Death Valley belong to Carson City man, others possibly to German tourist

Inyo County authorities have positively identified one of three sets of human remains located in southeast Inyo County in the past several months.

Deputy Coroner Jeff Mullenhour announced last week that remains located in the Badwater region of Death Valley are those of Carson City resident Norman Cox.

Cox was reported missing in August of 2010 after his family received a suicide note posted from Death Valley.

Local law enforcement conducted a search of the Death Valley area in August of that year, but was unable to locate any signs of Cox and eventually called off the search.

Off-duty Carson City Sheriff’s Deputy Jack Freer and off-duty Riverside County Search and Rescue team member Tom Mahood picked up where local law enforcement left off last month and were able to locate a set of remains in a remote region of Badwater on March 19.

The remains were turned over to the Inyo County Coroner’s Office, which was able to match the remains to dentals records kept on Cox.

The Coroner’s Office is continuing to investigate two other cases of human remains found in Death Valley and near Pahrump, Nev.

Mullenhour said that more remains were located in the Mengel Pass area of Death Valley in December. Those remains are believed to belong to 28-year-old Cornelia Meyer, one of four German tourists who went missing in 1996.

The other set of remains were located in a remote area west of Pahrump on Feb. 11.

Mullenhour said he is awaiting DNA results from both sets of remains in hopes of making positive identification.