A tattoo on one of the arms, "R.I.P. Deisha" was critical to identifying the man as Sheldon Prawl, 23, the Wayne County Medical Examiner said. Prawl was last seen in Jacksonville, N.C., on Oct. 31, 2013.
Mary Mazur, a spokeswoman for the medical examiner, said investigators have not yet been able to determine how, when or where Prawl was killed.
"The work of our forensic anthropologist in recovering his remains from the cement, and subsequent identification of the distinctive tattoo on his forearm was instrumental in his identification," she told the Detroit Free Press in an email.
The body was found May 30 by a passing jogger who noticed a bad smell. Mazur said the head and torso were in one crate and the rest of the body in another, with concrete partially covering the parts.
Police in Detroit and Jacksonville, a city of 70,000 in coastal North Carolina, are handling the investigation jointly.