A retired refinery manager hanged himself at the age of 86 just months after receiving a cancer diagnosis which ‘knocked the stuffing out of him’, an inquest at Chester Magistrates Court heard.
‘Life-long bachelor’ Donald Davies was found dead at his home on Wealstone Lane in Upton on September 22, 2016.
The socks and coffee he had gone out to buy that morning were next to his front door and a note for his family was left on the kitchen counter.
The inquiry into the circumstances surrounding his death heard that Mr Davies was extremely anxious about radiotherapy he was due to begin that month for prostate cancer.
Mr Davies’ sister June Perrin described him as a ‘very charitable life-long bachelor who loved work’ and had many friends through his job which took him around the world.
He retired at 55 but faced a period when some of his good friends passed away and he ‘missed them a lot’.
Mrs Perrin said her brother had always been in control of his life but the diagnosis ‘made him feel like he was not in control’.
He was ‘very low emotionally and depressed’ during the 10 days leading up to his death, but then they thought he had turned a corner and seemed more optimistic about the future.
Mrs Perrin became concerned when he failed to return after going out to buy socks and coffee to keep at her home where he had been staying.
The tragic discovery of his body was made by the daughter of Mr Davies’ neighbour, after Mrs Perrin asked for someone go round to his house to check on him.
Jane Marsden said she initially knocked on the door but then used the spare key to gain entry after there was no response.
In the hallway, she found Mr Davies.
Mrs Marsden added that she recalled her father saying it seemed to him that the cancer diagnosis had ‘knocked the stuffing’ out of Mr Davies.
A statement from Dr Martin Allan, Mr Davies’ GP at Northgate Medical Centre, revealed that Mr Davies attended the practice in the weeks before he died to discuss his feelings of anxiety and depression.
Mr Davies reported feeling worried about his upcoming treatment and was keen to postpone it.
Recording a conclusion of suicide, assistant coroner for Cheshire Jean Harkin said: “It is clear from the evidence that Mr Davies died from hanging.
“He found his diagnosis hard to deal with and did not cope well with sickness in himself.
“There was clear intent shown in the note he left.”