MYSTERY surrounds the death of an alcoholic who was found dead in her Seaford home.
Kathy Allen had been sick and choked to death but an inquest could not find why she had vomited.
The 45-year-old’s blood alcohol level was low and friend Amanda Pout said she had looked in a relaxed position when she found her on December 4 last year.
An inquest held at Eastbourne Magistrates Court last week heard the carer’s personality changed after suffering from poor health. Over the years this included having acute myeloid leukaemia and Mrs Allen went on to suffer from mental health problems and depression, followed by multiple organ failure in 2007. At one stage she was in a wheelchair for around a year.
A statement from ex-husband Trevor Allen explained, “The alcohol dependency went on for about 10 years, it was chronic for the last five years of her life.”
In a statement Miss Pout said her friend’s personality changed dramatically because of illness and alcohol dependency, adding, “She changed from a confident, capable, friendly person to someone who found it difficult to deal with everyday life.”
Mrs Allen, of Belgrave Road, had been to AA meetings and gone to private rehab but continued to drink.
Miss Pout visited her friend about once a week but would not always be let invited in.
Miss Pout, who last saw her pal on November 24, said her friend had sometimes appeared to be in pain when she swallowed and was told by Mrs Allen it was uncomfortable.
On December 4 Mrs Allen’s mum contacted Miss Pout and said she couldn’t get hold of her daughter. Miss Pout went to the address and after getting no answer let herself in and found the Seaford resident on a bed, propped up by pillows.
Empty wine bottles were found under the bed and there was medication on the floor but there was no evidence of an overdose and her blood alcohol level was not significant.
Police who visited the scene said they were satisfied there was no suspicious circumstances.
Pathologist Jane Mercer said she thought Mrs Allen had aspired gastric contents that had come from the stomach but did not know why she had vomited. She ruled out being under the influence of alcohol or ketoacidosis - which can be fatal and where the PH of blood is decreased.
Coroner Alan Craze said, “I know the cause of death but not quite the circumstances in which it came about.”
He recorded a verdict of accidental death.