Man Looking For Deer Antlers Finds Remains Of Missing MMA Fighter

The Hot Zone / Facebook

A man was searching through the woods for deer antlers in the great state of Missouri when he discovered the human remains of amateur mixed martial arts fighter, David Koenig. 

Police said the discovery ended a two-year search for David who was 25 year old at the time he was last seen, which was in February 2020 at a Branson motel.

The City of Branson, Missouri said that David’s remains were found on December 22nd in the woods near the 3700 block of Fall Creek Road in Branson, in the Ozarks region.

The gentleman that found the remains called the authorities who determined it was human. Authorities then called for investigators from the Branson Police Department and the Taney County Coroner’s Office to conduct a “meticulous search” of the area.

Police said that the search on Monday lead to “recovering most of the remains and several other personal artifacts.”

After determining that the remains were David’s, a forensic pathologist working for the police said, “There was no trauma and that the death did not appear to be the result of foul play.”

Thousands of hours were spent looking for David, which included conducting several searches of properties in Taney and Stone County, Missouri, as well as Boone County, Arkansas.

“Our department and the amazing group of volunteers never stopped in our efforts to find Mr. Koenig,” Branson Police Chief Jeff Matthews said. “While this is not the ending we hoped for, we offer our sincere condolences to the family and friends of Mr. Koenig.”

Officials still conclude that the circumstances around his death remain unclear. However, his mother Tracy Koenig believes he may have been in distress. She said he was friends with the owner of the Peach Tree Inn in Branson and stayed there a couple of nights.

He messaged a few of his friends asking for help,” she said at the time. “He thought he might be in some sort of trouble. But by the time they read the messages and tried to respond to him, he had stopped messaging. There was no answer from him.”

Branson’s family first reported him missing in March 2020 and a joint investigation was put together with the Missouri State Highway Patrol to look for him.

“He’s just not someone who would disappear. And he’s not a guy that someone could just take down,” Tracy Koenig said, according to Yahoo News. “He’s a force to be reckoned with. He’s a big, strong guy — but also with a big personality and big heart. He would do anything to protect his family.”