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Weeping Cross doctor's widow, 75, killed herself

By Staf Newsletter  |  Posted: September 25, 2012

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A KEEN sportswoman laid low by deteriorating health and the death of her husband killed herself in her home, a coroner has ruled.

Bridget Raby had enjoyed activities such as golf and tennis and had been involved with the charity Riding for the Disabled.

But in the months before her death on April 27 she suffered debilitating health conditions including dizziness, and eventually required 24-hour care at her Brocton Road home, Cannock Coroner’s Court was told last week.

In February she lost her husband, Dr Michael (Bruce) Raby, who founded Weeping Cross Surgery.

The inquest was told Mrs Raby, 75, had been in regular contact with her GP, Dr D S Lloyd, at Weeping Cross Surgery and in March had been prescribed Citalopram, an antidepressant. Other ways of treating her depression had been discussed.

But she had never expressed any wish to harm herself to her GP or anyone else, the inquest heard.

Detective Constable Stuart Carter, who led Staffordshire Police’s investigation into her death, told the inquest: “On April 27 she had lunch with her stepson Charles and her carer.

"Everything appeared in order, apart from that she seemed low because of the poor weather.

“She asked her carer to go to the shops."

"She returned at 5.20pm and the door was still locked but she was unable to locate Mrs Raby.

"She became concerned and called Charles, who attended the house and discovered Mrs Raby in the shower, a kitchen knife at her side.”

Paramedics attended Mrs Raby’s home but nothing could be done to save her and she was pronounced dead.

She was found with cuts to her neck and wrist, the inquest was told, and her cause of death was given as transection of carotid and radial arteries.

DC Carter said there was no suspicion of any third party involvement. No suicide note was found, the inquest was told.

South Staffordshire Coroner Andrew Haigh’s verdict was that Mrs Raby “killed herself while depressed”.

“She had been a very active and healthy lady but sadly in her final years suffered major deterioration in her health.”

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