Anti-bullying father Roger Crouch's Facebook goodbye

A grief-stricken father hanged himself after leaving a final farewell message to friends and family on Facebook, an inquest has been told.

Roger Crouch, 55, was discovered hanged by his wife Paola at their home near Winchcombe on 28 November.

He began an anti-bullying campaign after his son Dominic's suicide over rumours he may have been gay.

Mr Crouch wrote on Facebook "Au Revoir, so long - or maybe A Bientot" before taking his own life in his garage.

'Broken heart'

"The former Gloucestershire County Council director of children's services and Stow-on-the-Wold town clerk was overcome with grief at the suicide of his 15-year-old son Dominic 18 months earlier," the inquest in Gloucester was told.

The court was told Mrs Crouch alerted neighbours who attempted to resuscitate him, but paramedics declared Mr Crouch dead.

She said in a statement read to the court that her husband had continued to suffer mood swings and bouts of depression over Dominic's death.

"There was a lot of death in his life," she said.

On hearing evidence from psychiatrists that her husband had been "overcome by grief", Mrs Crouch added: "I think it's what you might call in an old fashioned way, a broken heart."

Hero of year

Recording his verdict at Gloucester Coroner's Court, assistant coroner David Dooley said: "Clearly he was very taken up with campaigning for his son and others he felt may have been subjected to bullying.

"But he was eventually overwhelmed by grief for his son. On the evidence I feel I can be sure of his settled intent to take his own life," Mr Dooley added.

Mr Crouch's son died when he jumped off a building near his school, St Edwards in Charlton Kings, in May 2010.

Mr Crouch was previously named as a hero of the year by Stonewall, the lesbian, gay and bisexual charity, for his work.

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