Lake Mead Update: 3rd and 4th Bodies May Be Same Person, Family May Have Answers

Posted on: August 11, 2022, 11:42h. 

Last updated on: August 11, 2022, 01:17h.

The Clark County coroner’s office said this week that the fourth set of human remains found in Lake Mead on Aug. 6 may be from the same person as the third set, discovered on July 25. Both remains were found in the receding waters at Swim Beach, a small recreation area along the Boulder Basin of Lake Mead.

Police have not revealed why they believe the remains belong to the same person. However, it can safely be assumed that they are investigating because both sets were incomplete and, apparently, complimentary.
Kenneth Funk drowned Lake Mead body remains

An employee photo shows Kenneth Funk while he worked in the slots department at Sunset Station in Henderson, Nev. Funk drowned in Lake Mead, saving his wife’s life in 2004. His daughter believes at least one set of recently discovered human remains is his. (Image: KLAS)If a new lead picked up by KLAS-TV/Las Vegas is correct, both sets of remains could belong to Kenneth Funk. The former Sunset Station casino employee drowned while saving his wife’s life near Swim Beach two decades ago. He was 56.

On June 19, 2004, Funk was in a pontoon boat with his wife, Annette, and two other family members, when a wave hit. Annette was thrown from the boat without a life jacket. She had just removed it to change shirts.

Funk, a former army veteran, cut the engine and jumped into the water. At the time, it was 300 feet deep.

“He gave her the life jacket, and they were in the water together,” Funk’s daughter, Jessica Condon, told KLAS, “and he treaded water as long as he could.”

Funk’s Death

Eventually, according to Condon, he closed his eyes and went under.

“My dad knew there was no way out for him, and he knew that if she held on to him, she would go down with him,” Condon said.

An airplane spotted Annette in the water about 45 minutes later, and she was rescued, according to the KLAS report. Park rangers searched the water, but Kenneth’s body was never recovered.

For 18 years, whenever there is a drowning out there or there’s ever, ‘Hey we found a body out here,’ I’ve kind of prepared myself for it,” Condon told KLAS.

“At this time, the investigation into these remains includes working to determine whether the two sets of remains are from the same person or not,” the coroner’s office told the Las Vegas Review-Journal newspaper.

Judging from photos of the remains posted online, Condon said the partially preserved torso is “built like my dad — the stomach the chest, the back.” She also noted her father had a unique scar on his stomach that she intended to confirm with the coroner.

First Two Bodies

On May 1, a barrel containing human remains was found near Hemenway Harbor. Police believe the remains were from a man who died from a headshot wound in the mid-’70s to early ’80s. Police homicide detectives are investigating.

Six days later, the skeletal remains of another man were found at Calville Bay. No foul play is suspected in that case or in the two more that followed.

Police have speculated that more remains may be discovered, as a devastating Western drought continues forcing the Lake Mead shoreline to retreat behind the Hoover Dam.