Dale Nicholson: Divers find remains of missing man, 61, at bottom of river 6 years after he disappeared
TASMANIA, AUSTRALIA: Divers discovered the body of a man who had been missing for more than six years inside a submerged car, only yards from a busy public pool. After chatting to a friend on the phone in the afternoon of December 10, 2016, Dale Nicholson, 61, disappeared from New Norfolk, which is located north of Hobart. The following day, his family reported him missing, but Tasmania Police conducted a thorough search and were unable to locate him.
A company that specializes in solving cold cases, Downunder Divers, revealed on YouTube that they had located Nicholson and his vehicle. His Ford Falcon automobile was discovered by the team floating in the River Derwent next to a parking lot for the busy New Norfolk pool.
Police claimed that the automobile and remains were found on the night of January 22, but the body has not yet undergone a formal identification. To find the car, officers relocated a number of bollards that had been put in place after Nicholson vanished, Daily Mail reports.
Downunder Divers expressed their happiness at being able to "bring closure to the family" in the YouTube Live video they used to announce their discovery. "It's a sense of relief … [for them] that we found him. They know where he is," diver Bill McIntosh said. "The amazing thing is the family has been walking this path. They've walked this path 1,000 times. Everyone in town walks by this location, and you just never know."
According to McIntosh, the automobile was discovered jammed behind a sizable pine tree, preventing it from being carried downstream by the river. "The windows were open and it was pretty clear that he'd been sitting right there for … years behind that large pine tree," he said. "It was what was protecting it for the past years … it made it so that no debris coming down the river could affect the car."
According to a coroner's report from 2021, "all available evidence" indicated that Mr Nicholson had died, but further conclusions could not be reached. Leanne Marshall, the sister of Nicholson, expressed disbelief at her brother's discovery after hearing it on ABC. "Finally closure for us to be able to lay Dale to rest and not have to wonder and keep thinking where is he," she said. "It was such a shock, he was found so close to home … he only lived around the corner."