Gary Speed's sons speak for first time of tragic moment ex-Wales footballer was found hanged despite 'perfect life'
GARY Speed's sons have spoken for the first time in nine years about the haunting moment the tragic footballer was found hanged, despite his "perfect life."
Tommy and Ed Speed, now 22 and 23, were left with questions following the tragedy – and have opened up about what it was like losing the man who held their family together.
Despite having the "perfect life," the brothers still speculate about what was going on that led to the footballer to take his own life.
Speaking to BBC host Dan Walker, Ed, the footballer's eldest son, said: "I was woken up by Mum screaming for me.
"I ran downstairs and she was struggling to breathe and talk.
"She was just in shock. She told me not to look in the garage but…it still haunts me what I saw….Dad suffering like that."
Ed was just 14 at the time – and had the task of breaking the tragic news to his little brother.
He knew that he had to be there for his mum as they spoke to emergency service operators on the phone.
Tommy said that the family hugged on his bed after they found out what happened – knowing that they had stick together and be strong for one another.
YOU’RE NOT ALONE
EVERY 90 minutes in the UK a life is lost to suicide.
It doesn't discriminate, touching the lives of people in every corner of society – from the homeless and unemployed to builders and doctors, reality stars and footballers.
It's the biggest killer of people under the age of 35, more deadly than cancer and car crashes.
And men are three times more likely to take their own life than women.
Yet it's rarely spoken of, a taboo that threatens to continue its deadly rampage unless we all stop and take notice, now.
That is why The Sun launched the You're Not Alone campaign.
The aim is that by sharing practical advice, raising awareness and breaking down the barriers people face when talking about their mental health, we can all do our bit to help save lives.
Let's all vow to ask for help when we need it, and listen out for others… You're Not Alone.
If you, or anyone you know, needs help dealing with mental health problems, the following organisations provide support:
- CALM, www.thecalmzone.net, 0800 585 858
- Heads Together, www.headstogether.org.uk
- Mind, www.mind.org.uk, 0300 123 3393
- Papyrus, www.papyrus-uk.org, 0800 068 41 41
- Samaritans, www.samaritans.org, 116 123
He described Gary as the "glue that held the whole family together" who would always be telling jokes and organising games at family events.
Despite the ordeal, the brothers learnt that they had to just get on with life and sadly learn to live without their dad.
The 22-year-old, who now studies business management and plays football at Adelphi University in New York, said he wished he could say thank you to his dad for everything he did.
Ed, 23, added that he wished his dad could be there for his big life achievements – like winning a game of football or when he graduated university.
Despite being confused about the reasons why, the brothers said that the anger surrounding the tragedy didn't last long – because they missed him so much.
Tommy said: "I still ask questions. We both still ask those questions. We'd be mad not to.
"Dad had the perfect life."
Welshman Speed became a hero in British football after a glittering career that took him to Leeds, Everton, Newcastle, Bolton and Sheffield United – making more than 900 appearances for club and country.
He had been appointed Wales manager upon retirement, just a year before his death.
Contact the Samaritans
If you have been affected by any of the issues in this article contact The Samaritans on 116 123. They are available for free at anytime.
Or email https://www.samaritans.org/
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