Carer dies from 'broken heart'

A WOMAN carer died of a 'broken heart' after finding her beloved boyfriend dead in a bed at their South Yorkshire home.

Heavy drinkers Mark Williamson, aged 40, and his lover Sylvia English, 54 were both found dead in their home on Stuart Street, Thurnscoe, on February 5.

A Sheffield inquest heard there was no evidence of suicide but Mr Williamson suffered from cirrhosis of the liver, chronic pancreatitis and heart failure.

It is believed Miss English found her partner of 10 years dead in their bed and died afterwards - possibly from hypothermia.

Her body was found fully dressed on the bathroom floor.

The medical cause of death for both of them was unascertained and Miss English was not suffering from any illnesses apart from depression.

There was no sign of a break-in at the home and although both had a few bruises on the body they were unconnected to their deaths.

Neither had died from alcohol or drugs a post mortem examination concluded.

Recording an open verdict, Assistant Deputy Coroner Donald Coutts-Wood said: "I cannot ascertain who died first. The more likely one is Mark Williamson first and Miss English probably died of a broken heart at that point."

The couple are believed to have died at sometime between January 29 and February 5.

Det Sgt Karl Saxton told the inquest: "There was no desire by either of them to commit suicide. There were no notes or anything. I personally think Miss English became upset and distressed having found Mr Williamson dead in whatever condition she was, she has thrown things around.

"If there's a condition for a broken heart I would suggest that."

The couple were said to be devoted to each other.

Mr Williamson was described as "emaciated", weighing just 38 kgs and Home Office Pathologist Dr Ken Shorrock described him as "wasting away".

"He had not died of alcohol intoxication or as a result of drugs. A combination of liver disease, pancreas disease, he wasted away and his muscles wasted away and one of those was his heart and that caused his death."

Miss English had slight liver problems consistent with effects of alcohol and anti-depressants were found in her blood.

Dr Shorrock said: "There was some sort of disturbance in the bathroom but the sort of thing when people pull things down. I have considered the possibility that for some reason she was lying in the bathroom, became hypothermic and died."

The couple were buried together at Thurnscoe Cemetery after a funeral service at Goldthorpe Salvation Army Citadel.