Before his daughter was attacked by burglars on one horrific night, Gareth Reeves was a happy-go-lucky individual who cared deeply about his friends and family. But after witnessing the aforementioned ordeal, Mr Reeves changed drastically, and this alteration in his personality ultimately led him to take his own life.
According to the Mirror, an inquest has heard how the 47-year-old was overwhelmed by the guilt of watching his 25-year-old daughter Jessica being brutally attacked and assaulted by burglars in Havant, Hampshire back in September.
In the months that followed, the truck driver was provided with counselling for the post-traumatic stress that he was going through. But this had no effect on him and in the last weeks of his life he started to block out his windows to avoid contact with the outside world.
Speaking at the inquest into his death, Gareth’s brother Andrew Reeve explained, “The attack completely changed him. He’d put blankets over the windows and he kept them there all the time. It was like blackout curtains.”
Malcolm Boniface, a lifelong friend of Gareth Reeve’s, added that his pal just couldn’t come to terms with what he had witnessed and how he hadn’t been able to protect his daughter.
By February he had become a shell of the man that he once was, and this sadly resulted in him taking his own life. After failing to return home one night, Gareth’s mother Norma reported him missing on February 22.
The Hampshire Chronicle reported that Gareth Reeve was found hanged in a wooded area on February 24th. Gareth had lived with his mother for a decade following the breakdown of his own relationship, but he was on the verge of moving into a new home with his son.
The inquest culminated in coroner Grahame Short’s ruling that Gareth’s death had been a suicide. He then added, “This was from all accounts a serious and horrific attack. I feel he could not live with his guilt – and that he did understand that he wasn’t able to help his daughter – but also his own fears about the long-term effects that that was going to have.”
Mr Short continued, “I think it was entirely wrong for him to have those thoughts, and that’s why he needed help.”
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