Daniel James O'KEEFFE - Tragically located deceased
Missing man Daniel O'Keeffe: Human remains found at Geelong family home
The five-year mystery surrounding the fate of missing Geelong man Daniel
O'Keeffe deepened on Monday with the discovery of his remains - beneath the
family house where he was last seen alive.
After a desperate social media-driven national search, Mr O'Keeffe's father
reportedly made the shock find underneath the house in suburban Highton, in
"You could only imagine the feeling one would go through when discovering
remains of what you believe to be your beloved son, underneath your house,"
Detective Sergeant Adam Forehan told reporters outside the O'Keeffe home.
"Very, very tragic really."
The grim discovery was made at the Summerhill Terrace property about 1.50pm.
In an emotional Facebook post on Monday, the O'Keeffe family said it was with
"heavy hearts" that they were able to share that "Dan's remains were discovered
The 24-year-old was last seen at his family's Geelong home about 9am on Friday
July 15, 2011.
His family initially thought he may have been living
with homeless people to
understand what it was like to live on the streets.
Then, in November 2011, he
was believed to have walked into a
Brisbane medical centre and asked
for a glass of water.
The family said the receptionist at the centre called them after seeing a
television interview and said Mr O'Keeffe was "visibly unwell" and going by his
middle name James.
Security footage was thought to have confirmed the story and the family spent
two months in south-east Queensland searching for him.
Mr O'Keeffe was due to start a carpentry apprenticeship the week after he went
missing. He had also not long opened a martial arts academy in Werribee and
lived between his parents' house and his girlfriend's Docklands apartment.
He did not have his wallet, identification or his medication on him when he went
Police confirmed the remains found on Monday afternoon were those of an adult,
but the family will have to await the results of DNA tests to confirm if they
belong to the missing young man.
Detectives have also not ruled out foul play.
"We're treating it at the highest level at this stage, until we satisfy
ourselves that there is no suspicious activity," Detective Sergeant Forehan
He could not say why the remains were not discovered when police first searched
the family property back in 2011.
The family's property is in a large housing estate named Highton on the outer
fringes of Geelong. The O'Keeffe home – a neat white house with black-tiled roof
– is nestled in a cul-de-sac.
A high-profile social media campaign, Dan Come Home, was launched soon after Mr
O'Keeffe disappeared. The Facebook page searching for answers to his
disappearance has more than 63,000 followers.
On the Dan
Come Home website, Mr O'Keeffe was described as a "kind, gentle, friendly
guy who's respected by his students, admired by his friends and adored by his
The website said Mr O'Keeffe had been suffering with depression and anxiety
before his disappearance.
On Monday afternoon, some family members briefly stepped outside the house to
talk to police officers.
Tributes began to flood the family's Facebook page only minutes after news of
the grim discovery was posted.
"Your tireless effort to find Daniel will always be remembered and carried on
within all those who also have loved ones missing as well as those who have
not," wrote one concerned user, while another said: "I obviously don't know you
or your family personally, but I think we as a community held hope with you all
that Dan would eventually come home, safe. My heart is breaking for you all xx."
Others hoped the find might bring some closure for the family.
"I'm so sorry to see this. Rest in Peace Dan. Although not the outcome we wished
for, I hope your family had some sense of closure. Thoughts with you at this sad
time," wrote one user.
It is with heavy hearts that the family and friends of Dan O’Keeffe, update
this page to share that Dan’s remains were...
Posted by Missing
Person - Daniel James O'Keeffe on Sunday,
20 March 2016
with Nino Bucci
For help or information contact Lifeline 131 114 or beyondblue 1300 224 636.