‘Devoted father’ from Thurston took his own life

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A ‘loving, caring, family man’ who was found dead in ‘unusual circumstances’ took his own life, an inquest has ruled.

Matthew Bower’s body was discovered in the boot of an abandoned Ford Focus car at Grange Farm, in Great Barton, on May 15.

Beside him was an empty gas canister he had used to ‘starve himself of oxygen’, Tuesday’s inquest heard.

Mr Bower, 44, of Laurel Close, Thurston, was reported missing on May 14.

He had ‘exhibited signs of being depressed’ and there were concerns for his welfare.

Tuesday’s inquest, at the Active Business Centre, in Bury St Edmunds, heard how Mr Bower’s car, with his body in the boot, was found by a farm worker on May 15.

The cause of death was given as hypoxia/anoxia due to carbon dioxide toxicity.

Delivering a verdict that Mr Bower took his own life, coroner Dr Peter Dean said: “Although unusual, the evidence is this was an intentional act, conducted with the understanding and intent to take his own life.”

Sarah Freer, Mr Bower’s partner, described him as a ‘loving, caring, family man’ and a ‘devoted father’.