Atlanta Police confirmed that a body recovered from the Chattahoochee River on Tuesday is Timothy Cunningham, a CDC employee who went missing in February.
“The body recovered by Atlanta Fire Rescue in the Chattahoochee River in northwest Atlanta late Tuesday evening has been positively identified as that of missing CDC employee Timothy Cunningham,” the Police Department said.
No additional information was immediately available.
In February, Cunningham, 35, reportedly told his employer, the CDC, that he was sick. When his mother did not hear from him, she drove from Maryland to to his home in Atlanta. She found his vehicle, wallet and phone at the house. He also left his beloved dog alone, according to various news reports.
His mother told officers that her son did not have a history of mental health issues and it was uncommon for him to not contact his family.
“[His mother] advised that Mr. Cunningham was upset about a promotion at work and she was concerned about his behavior,” the police report says.
The CDC has disputed this aspect of the story. Fox 5 Atlanta reported that Cunningham had been recently promoted to Commander under the U.S. Health Service Corps.
“There has been news coverage that Commander Cunningham recently did not receive a promotion,” a statement from the CDC says. “As many of his colleagues … have pointed out, this information is incorrect. In fact, he received an early promotion/exceptional proficiency promotion to Commander effective July 1, 2017, in recognition of his exemplary performance in the U.S. Public Health Service (USPHS). Over and above any of his assignments at CDC, his early promotion within the USPHS reflects his excellence as an officer and an employee.”