A Navy veteran found dead in his flat lay undiscovered for up to three years, US authorities have said.
The body of 51-year-old Ronald Wayne White was found on the kitchen floor of his apartment in the Dallas suburb of DeSoto by maintenance staff.
The divorced defence contractor, who travelled abroad for work, had his rent taken automatically from his bank account, into which his military pension was paid.
His concerned mother Doris Stevens said she had previously contacted police after failing to hear from her son, but was told it could not be treated as a missing person’s case because of his age.
Ms Stevens, who lives in New York, told the WFAA TV station: “All them days, holidays, I just suffered because nobody wanted to help find him.”
His remains were eventually found by workers from the DeSoto Town Center Apartment complex checking flats where tenants had not been using water.
Detective Pete Schulte of DeSoto Police said: “What I can tell you is it is very clear when officers entered that he had been there for a while.”
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The Dallas County Medical Examiner’s Office said in a statement that Mr White had been dead “for an extended period of time, up to when he was last known alive three years ago”.
The DeSoto Town Center said Mr White was frequently out of the country, and his bills were paid through automatic withdrawals from his account.
It said in a statement: “Our maintenance personnel discovered his body when they identified and responded to a service issue at his apartment.
“We are cooperating with the police as they investigate this incident.”
Ms Stevens, who confirmed her son was diabetic, said: “When the medical examiner told me three years, my knees gave away.
“My biggest question is, how in the world could my son have been dead in that apartment and nobody knows anything.”
Police said there was no indication of foul play.