My Helen wanted to die

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A WOMAN with a long history of mental illness killed herself by stepping in front of a train, an inquest heard.

Helen Littler, 46, died after being struck by a passenger train near the Slack Lane road bridge, Pentrobin, on December 6 last year.

An inquest into her death yesterday heard Ms Littler, of Glynne Way, Hawarden, had suffered with mental health issues for many years.

Her mother, Marjorie Robinson, told the inquest her daughter had previously given clear indications she wished to end her life.

“She used to say, ‘I just don’t want to live, I don’t want to be here,” she said.

Mrs Robinson said she believed if Ms Littler had survived the fatal collision she would have made further attempts to take her life.

Written evidence was presented to the inquest by train driver Michael Thomas, who drove the 5.34pm train from Wrexham to Bidston which collided with Ms Littler.

He recalled having a routine journey until he suddenly realised a person had stepped onto the track just 30 or 40 yards in front of him while the train was travelling at 40mph.

Despite a shocked Mr Thomas slamming on the brakes, the train could not stop in time.

He said: “At no time did the person make any attempt to move out of the way.”

Ms Littler grew up in Ellesmere Port and went to school at Eastham on the Wirral, being remembered as a “happy young girl” and very bright by her mother who has four other children.

But the inquest heard her daughter had developed a perfectionist attitude as a young teenager that led to her seeing a psychologist.

Her mother told the inquest: “She was never happy with herself.”

A former floor supervisor at St David’s Park Hotel, Ewloe, Ms Littler was later employed at Carden Park for a short time.

Mrs Robinson said her daughter had been very happy at St David’s Park.

But her mental health concerns continued to grow in later years, leading to her being sectioned in 2008.

She was later found walking along a railway line in her pyjamas in Wrexham.

In April 2010 she was admitted to the psychiatric unit at Wrexham Maelor Hospital, with progress appearing to be made on her mental health in the ensuing months.

Mrs Robinson, who last saw Ms Littler the day before she died, said her daughter “hated hospitals”.

The inquest heard Ms Littler had previously attempted to take an overdose and her mental health symptoms included paranoia.

Ms Littler was married for two years to Alan Littler in the 1990s, with the pair retaining a close friendship after they divorced.

Assistant deputy North East Wales Coroner Kirit Champaneria recorded a verdict of suicide caused by multiple major injuries.

See full story in the Leader

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