A 100-year-old man hanged himself after his eyesight failed and he could no longer watch music videos on his computer, an inquest heard today.
Gordon Crisp struggled to cope after the death of his wife in 2007 but was bought a laptop by his family.
They taught him to surf the net to find videos of opera and jazz but tragically the centenarian developed macular degeneration which slowly caused blindness.
Gordon, of Keynsham, Somerset, was found dead at his home on December 29 – collapsed on the bedroom floor after hanging himself.
An inquest in Flax Bourton, Bristol, heard he had hanged himself becasue he could no longer cope with the loss of his eyesight.
Dr Peter Harrowing, assistant deputy coroner for Avon, said: “They bought him a laptop computer and aged 95 he was taught how to surf the internet.
“He spent many hours surfing the net finding clips of opera and jazz.
“He developed macular degeneration affecting his eyesight which meant he could no longer use the computer which had given him so much enjoyment.”
Son-in-law Cameron Hughes who found him dead, told the inquest: ‘”Gordon was a proud man who struggled to allow people to do the day-to-day tasks.
“I had no idea he wanted to take his life but I was aware he was struggling with day to day life.
“I saw the milk on the door step and the post in the holder and I was instantly alarmed.
“I pushed the bedroom door and it was heavy to move and I was shocked to see Gordon behind the door. I was sure he had passed away.”
A report from his doctor, Ernst Sholt, confirmed the retired engineer had glaucoma and impaired vision and suffered from “bereavement issues” when his wife died.
Mr Crisp’s daughter Kathleen Llewellyn told the inquest: “He was a very independent man and never wanted to be a burden to anyone.
“I know when his sight failed it was a concern for him, he always wanted to stay in his own home and didn’t want a carer.”
“He probably decided he didn’t wish to be a burden and felt this was an appropriate way out.
“Sadly elderly people do take this action from time to time. Having heard the evidence I record he took his own life.”
Dr Harrowing returned a verdict of suicide, adding: ”Mr Crisp took deliberate steps at a time when he was unlikely to be disturbed and knew when taking the action his death would ensue.
“We will never know why he took the actions he did but we have heard he obviously missed his wife of many years.
“He probably decided he didn’t wish to be a burden and felt this was an appropriate way out. Sadly elderly people do take this action from time to time.
“Having heard the evidence I record he took his own life.”
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