Mum’s tribute to troubled son who tragically took his own life


A TROUBLED man who bravely battled severe depression and anxiety for 15 years and died after being struck by a train took his own life an inquest heard yesterday.

Bolton Coroners Court told Kristian Etheridge from Platt Bridge, went to the railway line near Springs Branch, Ince, on August 30 last year after telling his family he was going to the shops.

Assistant Deputy Coroner Kevin McLoughlin and a jury heard Kristian of Mellor Brook Drive told his case co-ordinator at the Five Boroughs he had had enough and feared he was a burden on his parents shortly before he died.

His mum Christine told the inquest Kristian, 34, had struggled forming relationships since he was a teenager and had been admitted to hospital on numerous occasions.

Mrs Etheridge said: “He had a social phobia and couldn’t keep friends because he thought they were going to hurt him.

“He was bright but was badly bullied at one school because he became withdrawn around other people and he didn’t achieve what he could have done.”

The court heard Kristian left his parents home to buy some pop from the shops at around 9.30am on the day of his death.

Mrs Etheridge said she quickly realised this was out of character and alerted the authorities. Worroed officers from Greater Manchester Police and the British Transport Police called his mobile and spoke to him, later reporting that he sounded slurred but calm and told them he was at a railway station but refused to give his location. Attempts were made to trace his phone and a search began but he was struck by a northbound train around 11.30am and died from multiple injuries.

The court heard Kristian had a history of self harm and was voluntarily admitted to the Brooker Centre in Runcorn in June 2012 following an overdose.

Doctors from Five Boroughs told the inquest they tried to move him away from medication towards psychology based treatments and diagnosed him with emotionally unstable personality disorder.

Dr Nanda Dayalan said when Kristian was discharged from Runcorn in July 2012 he seemed positive and felt he understood his condition better.

But his family became concerned about him a fortnight before his death when he required hospital treatment.

Five Boroughs care co-ordinator Louise Kelly said he was engaged with the care process and requested reviews to discuss his medication and treatment.

The court heard that at the time of his death he was making plans to return to studying academically and had been visiting community activities on the bus with a support worker.

Speaking outside court Mrs Etheridge said: “Kristian was a very loving son and brother and I think the tragedy of his death highlights the plight of people with mental illness.

“He has left a hole in our lives that will never be repaired and we miss him dreadfully.”

The British Transport Police concluded Kristian’s death could not have been prevented and a case review of his care by the Five Boroughs found his actions on August 30 could not have been predicted.

A spokeswoman for the Five Boroughds Partnership said: “This was a deeply tragic incident and our thoughts remain with the family of Mr Etheridge at this distressing time.”