Depressed man is found dead in yard

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A RETIRED painter and decorator was found hanging in his back yard by his partner when she returned from a shopping trip.

Raymond Wells, 66, of Braybrooke Road, who suffered from depression since he was nine, feared he would be left alone.

An inquest into his death, which happened on June 5, heard he had become upset after watching 24 Hours in A&E the night before, where the programme featured a man who lost his wife before Christmas.

The inquest on Tuesday (September 3) heard from Mr Wells’ partner of 19 years, Linda Torpey.

She said: “He suffered from depression for a long time and would get more depressed during the winter months. He did drink a lot and this was more associated with boredom.

“After doing the shopping each week I’d always call him when I got towards the house so he could help me carry the shopping.

“This time though he didn’t answer so I knocked on the door, calling out to him. There was no response.”

She said she found the door to the back yard open and thought Mr Wells was sunbathing. She went outside but found him hanging.

Miss Torpey said: “The night before 24 Hours in A&E was on television. On the programme was a man who had lost his wife before Christmas. Raymond told me he would hate to end up like that. The programme had upset him a bit because he was worried something might happen to me. He had a fear of being alone.”

The inquest also heard that Mr Wells tried to take his own life several years ago.

Mr Wells’ GP, Dr Pamela Herbert, of Warrior Square Surgery in St Leonards, said in a statement: “Mr Wells had a long-standing history of mental health problems. He had suffered from depression since the age of nine. He also suffered from hypertension and high cholesterol.”

At the end of the hearing, Christopher Wilkinson, assistant coroner for East Sussex, concluded that Mr Wells took his own life while suffering from depression.

Mr Wells is survived by his partner, two daughters, four grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.