Friday, 25 October 2013

Falklands veteran killed himself by deliberately crashing plane into a cliff after his wife left him

A Falklands veteran killed himself by crashing a plane into a cliff-face as he struggled with leaving the Royal Navy and splitting from his wife. Retired Royal Navy lieutenant commander Andrew Stillwell-Cox, 55, hired a light aircraft from his flying club for a solo flight, an inquest heard. As two friends waited for him at the airfield, he turned off-course and deliberately crashed, dying instantly.He nosedived on to beauty spot Sheep Rock just north of RAF Portreath, Cornwall, on July 21 last year. Horrified onlookers saw him circling at an altitude of around 500ft before his blue Cessna C172 M slammed into the ground and exploded on impact. An inquest heard Mr Stillwell-Cox, who was twice awarded the Sword of Honour, had struggled to cope after retiring as first lieutenant from RNAS Culdrose in Cornwall in 2007.A letter left on the dashboard of his friend and flying partner’s car described his difficulties at coming to terms with life as a civilian and a recent split from his second wife Ellie. He also left his car and house keys and police found a note addressed to his estranged wife at his home in Retallick Meadows, St Austell. The Truro inquest heard how Mr Stillwell-Cox had made one previous attempt to take his life a few weeks earlier by trying to gas himself in his car. He was taken to A&E but his risk of potential suicide was recorded as low. Read more HERE   R.I.P.