Riley Strain's body has been found. Police say a worker at a business several miles away from downtown Nashville made the discovery in the water on Friday morning.

  • Riley Strain had been missing since March 8.
  • Several street camera videos showed him walking toward, and then along, the Cumberland River in Nashville.
  • He had been out with friends at numerous bars along Lower Broadway. His last stop was at Luke's 32 Bridge, named after Luke Bryan.

WKRN shares that Strain's body was found in the Cumberland River near the Nations neighborhood in west Nashville. Specifically, he was near where 61st Ave. North approaches the river.

Map showing where Riley Strain's body was found
Google Maps

This area is eight miles upstream, although only a five-mile drive through downtown.

"No foul-play trauma was observed," Metro Nashville PD report. There were several identifiers used to confirm the body is Strain's.

During a Friday morning press conference, MNPD police chief John Drake said Strain's shirt and watch were two key items on the body that allowed them to be sure it was him. An autopsy will be performed.

Drake also said there was no evidence to indicate anything other than Strain fell into the river. The family was notified on Friday, as well — several family members had been in town since March 11 to aid in a search that attracted considerable media and social media attention.

Missing Riley Strain Timeline

A timeline of events indicates that about 20 minutes passed between Strain being kicked out of Luke's 32 Bridge and him falling in the river, as police say they believe happened.

He left the bar at 9:35 and headed north, perhaps confused because the hotel he was staying at was west. At 9:47 he was spotted four blocks away, at the intersection of Gay St. and 1st Ave. N.

A second video taken moments before that first video showed Strain walking along Church St. before it becomes Gay. St. The last video was from a police officer's body cam — he exchanged pleasantries with Strain at 9:52, but reported that the young man did not seem distressed.

Strain was walking north toward two bridges at the time of that interaction. Cameras near those bridges did not pick him up as he exited the overpass.

Strain's friends (he was in town for a fraternity convention) reported him missing after 1AM on Saturday (March 11). Later, an unidentified homeless man would say he saw Strain leaning over a railing near the river.

On March 17, the young man's credit card was found on the river bank by two TikTok content creators who'd joined the search.

The search remained focused on an area along the river even as social media asked about other theories, some very strange. Police urged people not to try to direct the search team in the wrong direction and explained they were focused on the river because that's where he was last seen. Those instincts proved to be appropriate.

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Gallery Credit: Billy Dukes

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