Bill Stephenson, 70, has lived in the same house for 46 years but he's never even heard the name of the man whose ashes were buried in his own backyard.
Stephenson recently dug up a box in his garden in Durham, United Kingdom, with a plaque on the top of it that read, "Thomas Lawson Cox, died 15 June 2008."
"I have no knowledge of him whatsoever," Stephenson told the Telegraph.
Stranger's ashes found in garden: A County Durham man is left "baffled" after a stranger's ashes are discovered… http://t.co/OZqFL94sSc— Newcastle upon Tyne (@thetoonjournal) June 18, 2015
The 70-year-old added that he's even gone back through the deeds to the house to try to figure out who all has lived there before him, but his search came up empty.
Stephenson made the discovery as he was checking out the job his gardener had just finished.
"It was a shock. At first I thought someone had played a prank and maybe it was just the top, stuck on the soil," Stephenson told the Telegraph. "Then I examined it, and it was a full one and as far as I can tell it is intact."
The homeowner said the incident didn't spook him, and it's a good thing it didn't because Stephenson isn't allowed to remove the box from his own garden without the Ministry of Justice completing the appropriate paperwork first.
Police in Durham were able to track down the deceased man's brother but he has no idea how the ashes got there either. However, the brother plans to take them to a funeral parlor or the crematorium that performed the cremation of his brother.
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