Wales politics

Carl Sargeant's family 'overwhelmed' by support

Carl Sargeant
Image caption An inquest into Carl Sargeant's death was opened on Monday

The family of former Welsh Labour minister Carl Sargeant have said they have been "overwhelmed" by the support they have received since his death.

It is understood he took his own life four days after being sacked over claims of inappropriate behaviour.

His son, Jack, said in a statement that "knowing how much Dad was loved has helped us bear the pain".

Jack said being in the assembly on Tuesday to see AMs pay tribute to his father was a "very moving experience".

"My mum Bernie, my sister Lucy and I have been overwhelmed by the support we have received since Dad's tragic death last Tuesday," he said.

"This has been the hardest week of our lives.

"It's difficult to imagine how we would have coped without the support of other family members, the Connah's Quay community and Dad's friends from across Wales.

"We have had so many messages of support from people who had met Dad once or those who had never met him at all but knew from others what a kind, caring and genuine man he was.

"Knowing how much Dad was loved has helped us bear the pain.

"For us to be in the National Assembly yesterday - to hear for ourselves the heartfelt tributes from his friends and colleagues in Cardiff - was also a very moving experience.

"We will always cherish the kindness extended to us during this time by friends and strangers alike.

"As a family, we would like to say 'thank you' from the bottom of our hearts."

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Media captionJeremy Corbyn offers his "deepest sympathies" to the family of Carl Sargeant

Theresa May and Jeremy Corbyn both paid tribute to Carl Sargeant during Wednesday's Prime Minister's Questions in the House of Commons.

The Labour leader told MPs: "I hope the House will join me in sending our deepest sympathies to the family and friends of the late Carl Sargeant, the Labour assembly member in Wales who very tragically died last week."

The prime minister replied: "I join with you in offering condolences to the family and friends of Carl Sargeant and I'm sure that goes for everybody across this whole House".

Earlier, Flintshire council deputy leader Bernie Attridge said an appeal to raise a £2,500 memorial fund for the late Alyn and Deeside AM was half way towards its target.

An inquest opened and adjourned on Monday found the provisional cause of Mr Sargeant's death was hanging.

An independent inquiry is to look at First Minister Carwyn Jones's handling of the allegations against Mr Sargeant.

Mr Jones said he had "no alternative" but to sack him and did so "by the book".

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