A SOLDIER, who had served in Iraq, hanged himself two days before his close friend's funeral, an inquest heard.

Lee Crowe, aged 32, killed himself on August 19 this year at his girlfriend's home on St Davids Drive in Callands just over two weeks after he had been referred to 5 Boroughs reporting 'low mood and self-harming thoughts'.

Geoff Parr, from the mental health organisation, said at that time the Runcorn dad had not given staff 'any concerns they needed to act that day'.

He added: "Mr Crowe was asking for future appointments and he would have been seen if the practitioners thought it was an emergency."

The inquest heard Mr Crowe was found by his girlfriend Sandra Craig after she came home from work.

She added: "I found the letter and then went around to the garage (where Mr Crowe said he would be in the note.)

"He had locked it from inside and put a bag over the window but it had not covered it entirely and I could see him inside."

When police and ambulance arrived they found Miss Craig had smashed a window to unlock the door and was bravely performing CPR on Mr Crowe.

A police officer confirmed there was no suspicious circumstances surrounding the death and the letter was an apology and said it was 'something he had to do'.

A toxicology report also confirmed there were no drugs in his system but Mr Crowe, who was described during the hearing as a binge drinker if he got upset, had been drinking although it was difficult to detect how much.

Coroner Janet Napier said: "It was a horrifying shock for everybody in what is obviously a very caring family.

"He had terrible things happen to him in the past including his friend who he trained with at the Welsh Guards shooting himself and then was diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder."

She recorded the cause of death as hanging and that Mr Crowe had taken his own life while the balance of his mind was disturbed.

Friends of Mr Crowe's family and dad-of-three Peter Robinson, who died following a motorbike crash on the A562 Dan’s Road in Widnes on August 5, have since rallied around and set up a trust fund for the children of both men.