November 27, 2020

Hanged footballer found by his wife

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Gary Speed who died on Sunday with his wife Louise

Wales football manager Gary Speed was found hanged at his home by his wife Louise, an inquest heard yesterday.

Detective Inspector Peter Lawless, of Cheshire Police, today confirmed to Warrington coroner Nicholas Rheinberg that the 42-year-old father-of-two’s body was found by his wife at their Cheshire home just before 7am on Sunday.

He said there appeared to be no suspicious circumstances and a post mortem examination found Speed’s death was caused by hanging.

Mr Rheinberg said: “I adjourn this inquest until January 30, 2012. The inquest will be heard in Warrington and will commence at 2pm.”

There was a huge media presence at the inquest in Warrington but members of Speed’s family did not attend.

The coroner asked the media to “respect the privacy” of Speed’s family.

Earlier the devastated family of the record breaking midfielder thanked well-wishers for their messages of support after the shock death.

A short statement was read out by Speed’s agent outside the family home in Huntington, Chester, where Speed lived with wife Louise, 41, and sons Edward and Thomas.

The former Everton FC, Leeds United and Newcastle United midfielder was reportedly found hanged by Louise on Sunday morning.

Hayden Evans, who was also a close friend of Speed’s and the best man at his wedding, asked the press to respect the family’s privacy at ‘a very difficult time’, saying: “Gary’s family would sincerely like to thank all the people who have sent messages of condolence and tribute.

“We have been overwhelmed by the support. In what is a very difficult time, it really has helped.

“We would ask that the family be given privacy and respect and that they be left to grieve in piece.”

“We spoke Friday, everything was normal. We’d speak regularly, we’d meet each other – there were no tell-tale signs whatsoever, and I think that’s what’s made it all the more shocking.”

He added: “One of my everlasting memories is the number of times we would come back after a Leeds game, into his local pub, and within half an hour to an hour his shirt would be off, to reveal a Wales national shirt, and he’d be singing Land of my Fathers in Welsh. That always stays with me.”

In The Sun newspaper, Mr Evans dismissed claims that Speed and his wife had argued before his death, saying: “Louise is saying that is not the case, she just doesn’t understand it.

“They were happily married and anyone who knows them will tell you that. This is why it’s a mystery.

“We genuinely at the moment have no clue whatsoever what has caused it and I have been with the family all day.

“Everybody has the same question and no one has an answer. We are all in shock.”

Mr Evans also rubbished suggestions that Speed had previously suffered from depression, saying: “The one thing the family and me, as one of his closest friends, would totally refute is that.

“There was no indication of any problems and never has been.”

The touching tributes to the popular player and manager have continued to flood in from the football world.

Former Newcastle United team-mate Alan Shearer spent most of Saturday afternoon with Speed at the BBC studios in Manchester.

After Speed finished his appearance on the Football Focus show, he met up with Shearer, who was watching the Stoke City v Blackburn match on TV researching for the evening’s Match of the Day show.

The friends watched the Britannia Stadium clash together before Speed made the short trip to Old Trafford to watch their former club Newcastle United take on Premier League Champions Manchester United.

Premier League record goal scorer Shearer, who was one of the last people to see Speed alive, said: “The question I keep asking myself and have done since I heard the dreadful news is ‘Why?

“Why Speedo, didn’t you give me or one of your other close mates a ring, if you were feeling so bad?

“Why he couldn’t have picked up the phone in those moments before he did what he did, I’ll never know. None of us will.”


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