An inquest was told that This Morning star Ruth Langsford’s sister Julia took her own life after a long battle with depression.
Julia Johnson, a 62-year-old landscape gardener, died in June, with Ruth and her husband Eamonn Holmes telling This Morning viewers that her death was the result of a ‘long illness’
On Thursday, an inquest in Woking, Surrey, was told that Julia took her own life in her home in Lingfield, Surrey, which she shared with her husband Paul.
Ms. Johnson had struggled with depression for many years, but had recently had her appointments with a psychiatrist reduced in frequency to once every six months after her condition was deemed to have improved.
On June 15, while on a weekend visit to the home of the couple’s daughter Katie, Paul Johnson grew increasingly concerned about his wife’s welfare, making numerous attempts to contact her.
Tragically, when Mr. Johnson returned to the couple’s home at around midnight on that date, he discovered his wife’s body in the garage.
The assistant coroner for Surrey Anna Crawford confirmed that Julia Johnson had taken her own life, and had died by hanging.
Ms. Crawford went on to note that Ms. Johnson had been prescribed a daily dose of 30mg of metazapine [mirtazapine] by her GP, but that there was no trace of the medication in her system at the time of her death.
Ms. Crawford said: ‘It is more likely than not that she was not taking it but it is unknown the effect of that on her mind.’
Julia Johnson had spoken about her struggle with depression in the past, telling the Express in 2010: ‘In adult life I have suffered from depression, especially when I hit my fifties. I’m learning to deal with it now, but Ruth has been really supportive.
‘I’d phone her in tears and go and stay with her. She encourages me to have more confidence in myself and when I’m trying to do too much, she has taught me to say no and look after myself a bit more. She’s the best sister anyone could have.’
The inquest into Ms. Johnson’s death was not attended by Ruth Langsford or Eamonn Holmes.
Following her sister’s tragic death, Ruth took a break from her presenting duties, with the 59-year-old telling her fans: ‘My lovely Sis Julia has sadly died after a very long illness. My heart is completely broken.
‘She was the kindest and most gentle soul and I will miss her forever.
‘As I am sure you will appreciate I need to take time to grieve with my family. Thank you for understanding.’
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