FARGO — Fargo police said on Wednesday, Oct. 14, that the remains of a missing 80-year-old man had been found the day before in an unoccupied commercial building not far from the memory care facility he apparently walked away from on Oct. 1.
Robert McKinnon was last seen alive about 5:30 p.m. on Oct. 1, in the 4500 block of 36th Avenue South in southwestern Fargo, in the area of Maple View Memory Care where he resided.
In a Wednesday Facebook post, the Fargo Police Department announced that McKinnon's remains had been found Tuesday afternoon after officers responded to a report of an unattended death at 3501 45th St. S.
"It is with a heavy heart we share that yesterday we located Mr. McKinnon," the post read. "We notified the family as soon as Mr. McKinnon was found, but we decided to hold off releasing the information to the public to allow the family time to contact relatives."
Police followed up that Facebook post with another that said McKinnon was found in an unoccupied commercial building and there were no signs of foul play. They said an autopsy would be done to determine his cause of death.
After an extensive search in the area surrounding the memory care facility, McKinnon's body was discovered.
"Multiple ground searches were completed and two K9 searches were conducted that did not lead to the building where he was found," the police said in their post, adding that the ground searches did not give searchers authority to go into privately owned buildings without permission.
"We did contact several businesses near the (care) facility to inquire about security video and to let them know we were looking for Mr. McKinnon," the post said.
Prior to McKinnon being found, Bridget Weidner, director of the division of health facilities for the North Dakota Department of Health, said state health officials had been in contact with the memory care facility where McKinnon lived to make sure no other residents were at risk.
Weidner said the department of health's involvement did not rise to the level of an investigation, but added that a future investigation could not be ruled out.
She said the department of health had received no complaints about Maple View in the last five years.
A department of health site visit to Maple View in July 2019, the most recent site survey available, indicated that at that time the care center was in compliance with licensure requirements.
A spokesman for Maple View declined to comment for this story.