An enquiry into the death of former Newcastle midfielder Gary Speed has heard that his death may well have been accidental, but that days before he had sent a text message to his wife mentioning suicide.
The ex-Wales manager was found dead in the garage of his home on November 27th, in a tragic and shocking incident that has rocked the game in Britain.
Speed’s widow Louise was present at the enquiry at Warrington Town Hall in Cheshire, as coroner Nicholas Rheinberg delved deeper into the death.
“The evidence does not sufficiently determine whether this was intentional or accidental,” the medical man stated.
Mrs Speed told the enquiry that they had exchanged angry words on the night before his demise, and that her husband had ‘talked in terms of taking his life’ in a text message just days before.
Mrs Speed also stated that the stress of become the Welsh national manager had taken it’s toll on the couples relationship, with additional responsibilities and commitments forcing the coach to spend less time with his family.
Former Newcastle team-mate Alan Shearer also wrote a letter that was heard by the enquiry, and admitted his sheer surprise at the news of Speed’s death.
“Gary didn’t appear worried about anything. Gary seemed to be enjoying his job as Wales manager and coped with the pressure well,” Shearer stated.
“He knew what it was like beforehand and some part of him liked to work under pressure. When I left the studio on that Saturday I expected to hear from him on the Monday.
“On Sunday I got the phone call telling me Gary had died. I didn’t believe it. I was shocked. Gary is probably one of the last people out of my million friends to ever do that.
“I had only seen him the day before and he seemed fine, we had plans for the following week too. It just didn’t and still doesn’t make sense to me,” he concluded.
By Gareth McKnight