BOISE, Idaho. Robert Bolt once wrote, “Death comes for us all. Even for kings he comes.” But it’s a lot less complicated when death comes for the king. For starters, we know the guy’s name.

What Happens to Unidentified Deceased Idahoan?

What happens, however, when an average Joe forgets his wallet at home just before Joe hops aboard the Reaper’s ferry in a public park? What happens to his remains?

Fortunately, the state of Idaho has a dignified process in place when no one assumes responsibility for its unidentified and deceased citizens. The process unfolds in the following sequence:

  • once ACCO confirms they’re unable to locate the deceased Idahoan’s family, Ada County’s Public Administration steps in to liquidate the deceased’s possessions pursuant to Idaho Code 31-3412
  • the case closes and any money made from the deceased’s personal property is used to offset the cost of cremation in accordance with Idaho Code 31-3412
  • last, the cremated remains are returned to the county coroner for internment

Memorial for the Forgotten

From what we gather, the way Idaho manages its unclaimed decedents is standard across the country.

What makes Idaho stand out, however, are the lengths Ada County’s coroner goes to to give the unclaimed a respectful send-off into the afterlife. Each May, the Ada County coroner and Cloverdale Cemetery in Boise co-host a public Memorial for the Forgotten ceremony.

An even that requires multiple resources and a great deal of time and care to prepare for, we're very proud of how Ada County honors the life and death of its unidentified Idahoans. Details for the 2023 ceremony have yet to be determined.

Welcoming Dr. Riffle

We'd be remiss not to mention that this year, Ada County welcomed a new coroner. Congratulations, Dr. Richard D. Riffle. We appreciate the work you do for our community. 


The National and Unidentified Persons System operates as a resource and database for the nation’s missing, unidentified, and unclaimed deceased citizens.

A federal initiative funded and managed by the National Institute of Justice, NamUs provides free resources to medical examiners, coroners, law enforcement, forensic personnel, and a missing person’s family.

At present, NamUs has helped Idaho resolve 272 missing person cases, 14 unidentified missing person cases, and 4 unclaimed person cases.

Keep scrolling to tour the tombstones of Boise's historic & storied Joplin Cemetery!

Joplin Cemetery: Idaho's Most Unique Burial Grounds

Joplin's Cemetery - Est. 1882 - Eagle, Idaho

"To the memory of the pioneer families who came to this valley in 1880. This sacred place is reserved and perpetuated as they found it. Dry and desolate, many were the hardships and privations endured. Dedicated to the spirit of the old timers and pioneers."
 Scroll on for a unique tour of Idaho's most interesting cemetery!

8 Deaths & Murders That Devastated Idaho

Please join us in honoring the legacy of these beautiful Idahoans we lost too soon.

19 Surprising Things You Can Be Legally Buried With In Idaho & 1 Thing You Can't

☠️ Weird $#!t People Have Googled About Human Bones

🎼 Billy Currington once sang, "God is great, beer is good, and people are crazy."

😳 Well, Billy, after looking up the legality of buying and selling human bones, we can officially attest to the fact that people are, in fact, crazy.

🤔 The gallery below features the weirdest $#!t people have Googled about human bones.

💰 From buying and selling them, to how they taste and artistic ways to preserve them, Google is a bottomless pit of morbid questions and curiosities.

😉 So have fun with that.

Dead-Honesty: 1-Star Yelp Reviews of Valley Funeral Homes

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