The State Medical Examiner’s office has positively identified a body found on a vacant Noview Avenue lot in Homer on Sept. 29 as that of John “Clint” Griffith, 40, a Huntsville, Texas, man reported missing about 3 p.m. Sept. 2 after he failed to show up to work in Alaska.
Homer Police Chief Mark Robl said on Oct. 3 a man taking a shortcut through the Noview Avenue area west of Bartlett Street on Sept. 29 found Griffith’s body in a tree on a vacant lot and reported it about 3 p.m.
Robl said the area was heavily wooded and the body was not easily seen from the road.
Based on the description of Griffith, Robl said police suspected at the time the body was that of Griffith. Griffith had last been seen wearing an orange work jumpsuit.
Alaska State Troopers on Tuesday, Oct. 10, received identification from the medical examiner and confirmed the body was Griffith. The medical examiner determined the cause of death was suicide, said trooper spokesperson Megan Peters. When Homer Police found the body last month, troopers notified Griffith’s family that the body might be his. The family also released an obituary on Oct. 6.
According to a trooper press release last month, Griffith was reported missing on Sept. 2 after he failed to show up to work at M-I Swaco, an oilfield support services company. Following an investigation, troopers later said Griffith had last been seen about 11:20 a.m. Sept. 2 at O’Reilly’s Auto in Homer, a vehicle supply store on the Sterling Highway near West Pioneer Avenue.
The Noview neighborhood is about a half-mile away from the store. In a missing person alert, troopers said Griffith didn’t have access to a vehicle and might have been hitchhiking. Griffith also had been reported to have missed flights home to Texas.
According to his obituary, Griffith was born in Lafayette, La., and served 14 years in the U.S. Air Force and Navy.
The Center, or South Peninsula Behavioral Health Services, offers 24/7 crisis services.
For help, call 907-235-7701 or walk-in 8:30 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday–Friday to 3948 Ben Walters Lane, or call 235-0247 (South Peninsula Hospital) or 911 evenings, weekends and holidays, or walk into the hospital for help.
The national suicide prevention lifeline is (800) 273-8255.
Or, text 741741 and type in HOME for crisis support.
Reach Michael Armstrong at firstname.lastname@example.org.