Mum left heartbroken after losing two children to suicide in just two years

A heartbroken mum has told of her devastation after losing two children to suicide in just two years.

Liza Taylor says her son Joseph Palmer, 24, was very close to his sister and never recovered from her death.

The 24-year-old lad was found hanged in the outhouse of his older sister Bethany’s home in Ilkeston, Derbyshire, in September 2017 where he had been staying.

His other sister Sophia Palmer, who had suffered from mental health issues, had been founded hanged just two years earlier.

Derbyshire Live reports the siblings’ devastated mum told an inquest at Derby Coroner’s Court: "Lightning doesn't strike twice but in our case it has.

"We have lost two children now and I don't know how we are going to cope."

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Mrs Taylor told the inquest that, even though Joseph was Sophia's little brother, "he was like her older brother, he would look after her".

The court was told the young man had been experiencing mental health difficulties for several years before his death.

Trevor Taylor, Joseph’s step-father, said he had lived with his father from a young age but was made homeless when he was 16.

He then spent a year in a bedsit, supported by his mum and step-dad, until they could move him into a flat.

Mr and Mrs Taylor said it was the suicide of his sister Sophia in September 2015 that pushed Joseph further into decline.

Although Mr and Mrs Taylor "tried to support him as best we could" their son "got into scrapes" and ended up being evicted from a rented property he was in.

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Six weeks before he died, Joseph moved in to his sister Bethany's home.

About a month before his death, the court was told that Bethany found her brother in the outhouse and he "seemed to be attempting to take his own life".

She managed to stop him but, tragically, on September 24, 2017, Joseph went to the outhouse again and took his own life.

In an emotional statement, Mr and Mrs Taylor said they "only found out after the event" that their son had been in trouble with the police.

The inquest was told that Joseph had been in a relationship with a woman for about a year and they had argued the day before his death.

From September to December 2015, Joseph was under intense supervision by mental health services.

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Mr Taylor said he was "extremely distraught" after his sister's death and he would take him "every other day" to the Radbourne Centre, a mental health unit in Derby.

When he was discharged from the crisis team, Mr Taylor said "there was nothing" with regards to follow up support.

Following a missed GP appointment in May 2016, Mr Taylor said his step-son stopped taking medication but "seemed to settle down".

"It all happened very quickly at the end, everything spiralled," he told the hearing.

The couple said the incredibly tough situation has been having an effect on their younger children, who are 16 and 17.

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Assistant coroner Tanyka Rawden said she found that Joseph "did take his own life".

"The fact that he was struggling, he was grieving for his sister, he was struggling with nowhere to live, he was struggling with depression.

"It is a difficult thing to hear and I can't imagine what you have been going through," she said.

For confidential support call the Samaritans in the UK free on 116 123 or visit a local Samaritans branch

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