Gun suicide victim’s history of depression

A ‘GENTLE and fun-loving’ man who had a history of depression killed himself with a double-barrelled shotgun, an inquest has heard.

Gordon Rex, who was found with massive head injuries in the garage of his Hailsham home, had a gun licence which had been suspended in 2010 but was subsequently given back to him.

The 64-year-old was found dead in the garage at his Beechwood Close home by his wife Audrey on the afternoon of August 19 last year.

The inquest at Eastbourne Magistrates Court heard the retired business transfer agent had been suffering from anxiety and depression, had problems with back pain and had also suffered a car accident in 2009.

Mr Rex was also worried about possible bowel problems, had been sectioned for a period of time and suffered a complete breakdown in June 2010.

Mrs Rex, who called her spouse a ‘loving and generous husband and father’, had her statement read by Coroner Alan Craze in which she explained he had enjoyed rough shooting and deer shooting.

The court heard that he had thoughts about self-harm in 2010 and there had been a period where his spouse made sure he did not have access to the gun cabinet but this had not been a cause for concern at the time of his death.

Mr Rex, who seemed to be improving by August 2010, had been in touch with community psychiatric nurse Michelle Will.

She had been seeing him to discuss his concerns and saw him on August 5, with another appointment lined up for August 30.

He also had psychology sessions and was given information about pain therapy.

The inquest heard Mrs Rex last saw her husband on the morning of his death and returned home in the early evening, noticed the gun cabinet was open and found him on the floor of the garage.

No suicide notes had been left at the scene but there had been paperwork left upstairs which made mention of his feelings.

A statement read on behalf of Detective Sergeant Ross Bartlett said there had been no sign of forced entry or a struggle.

Recording a verdict of suicide Coroner Alan Craze called Mr Rex’s death a ‘complete and utter tragedy’ and said he felt Mr Rex decision’s to take his own life would have been made minutes beforehand.

He added that Mrs Rex had given her husband ‘enormous support’.

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