Vicar's son found hanging after row

PUBLISHED: 06:57 08 June 2006 | UPDATED: 09:25 24 May 2010

THE son of a Cheddar vicar was found dead after a party organised to cheer him up turned sour, an inquest heard. Ben Reynard, the son of Reverend John Reynard, of Cheddar Valley Community Church, was found hanging at the family home in The Hayes in the ea

THE son of a Cheddar vicar was found dead after a party organised to cheer him up turned sour, an inquest heard.Ben Reynard, the son of Reverend John Reynard, of Cheddar Valley Community Church, was found hanging at the family home in The Hayes in the early hours of February 28.The night before, a party had been organised to cheer up Mr Reynard, who was depressed.The 21-year-old window cleaner's partner, Joanna Cockram, gave evidence to coroner Michael Rose during an inquest held in Bridgwater last week.Ms Cockram, of Axbridge, said Mr Reynard was depressed and was having trouble looking after their child Oli.They organised a poker evening with friends, but during the party a row broke out.She said: "I didn't know anything serious had happened until the policeman came to the house and said Ben had died."He sent a text message, but I didn't get it until the next day. It said: 'Jo, tell Oli I love him, you know I love you. Ben, always yours.' There was no indication to say he would do this."Giving evidence, Rev Reynard said: "Up until 16 Ben was a strong Christian, but he suffered for that in school."I think he had had enough and he then got in companionship with people that were giving him stick."From 16 he started to mix with a group of boys we weren't happy about and the relationship with Jo started just before he was 18."We said we weren't happy about him living with Jo. Over the last year we saw lots of Ben, he used to pop in every day."We tried to make contact with Jo to meet the baby, but it wasn't possible. The second time we saw the baby was the weekend Ben died. We only saw the baby twice."He came again to the house the night he died. He said someone had threatened to hit him. It was a situation we had got used to."Rev Reynard said he thought a phone call was made in the garage in which things were said which put Ben over the brink.Rev Reynard told the inquest: "The police told us some pretty horrible things were said to him over the phone."Coroner Michael Rose adjourned the inquest to hear evidence from one of the friends at the party. No date has been set for the hearing to be resumed.

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