‘We have no idea why our son took his own life’

A popular Sheppey rugby player took his own life, an inquest has concluded.

Connor Russon, a former pupil of Fulston Manor School, in Sittingbourne, was found dead at his home in Rodmer Close, Minster, Sheppey, on Wednesday, February 24.

Connor Russon

His body was discovered in the garden shed by his mother Clare at 8.30am as she went to feed her dogs in the garden.

Paramedics were on the scene in 15 minutes and confirmed that Connor Russon had passed away.

Coroner Beena Patel heard that Mr Russon had a girlfriend and had been a plumber, but lost that job in the Covid pandemic. However he had found a new job as a support worker in a children’s home, a role that he was thoroughly enjoying.

He was also due to take up a new post the following month as an activities co-ordinator for adventure holidays.

His father said Conner had been fond of sport, playing football and also rugby to a high standard, playing for Gillingham, Sheppey and Kent teams.

Conner Russon playing rugby for Sheppey in red and white

The family had spent the previous day socialising together and Mr Russon had seemed cheerful and well.

The family told the inquest that they had no idea why he had taken his own life, as they had had no indication of any worries, though Mrs Russon said Connor could be emotional and “wore his heart on his sleeve.”

He had not had any known mental health issues.

The court heard that Connor and his brother Jacob were in the habit of going to the garden shed to smoke, and Jacob had passed Connor going there in the early hours that morning.

A post mortem determined that Mr Russon had consumed cocaine and had also drunk alcohol to more twice the drink-drive limit.

WBC World Heavyweight Boxing Champion Tyson Fury sent a message of sympathy

A police investigation found no evidence of any third party involvement.

Inquiries with his GP, revealed no illnesses that would be relevant, except that in June 2019 he had presented with pains in his hands and told his doctor then that he took cocaine and occasionally binge-drunk at weekends.

He was offered a drug rehabilitation course, but declined to take up the offer.

The coroner concluded his death was suicide.

Miss Patel said it was clear that Mr Russon had been much loved and offered her condolences to his family and friends.

There had been a public outpouring of grief following his death in February, including a video tribute posted on Mr Russon’s Facebook page by the WBC World Heavyweight Boxing Champion Tyson Fury.

Mr Russon was keen on boxing, often cheering on his pal Martin McDonagh.

Friends held an event to release Chinese lanterns into the sky in memory of Mr Russon, a house-music fan, whom they described as the “life and soul of any party.”

A Just Giving page set up in his memory has raised more than £6,500 and is still open for contributions. The money will be donated to the mental health charity MIND.

You can visit the Just Giving page here.

For more information on how we can report on inquests, click here.

For confidential support on an emotional issue, call Samaritans on 116 123 at any time or click here

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