Couple Jump From Cliff With Son's Body
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(June 2) -- British police are investigating what one resident has called a "terrible tragedy" -- the apparent suicide of a couple whose 5-year-old son died of natural causes.
The bodies of Neil and Kazumi Puttick were spotted Sunday at the base of Beachy Head, a notorious suicide spot in East Sussex, London's Daily Mail reported. The couple had placed the body of their son, Sam, in a rucksack before they jumped, police said, and it was found next to them.
Sam, whose spinal cord was injured when a car hit him at age 1, was paralyzed from the neck down and used a ventilator 24 hours a day, the newspaper said. He had been hospitalized with pneumococcal meningitis, an inflammation of the brain and spinal cord, and was discharged Friday so that he could die peacefully at home, a hospital spokesman told the Mail.
Sam died that night. Police said that the Putticks made the 100-mile trip from their home to Beachy Head on Sunday. There were two rucksacks found near Neil and Kazumi's Puttick's bodies. One contained their son, and the other held some of his toys.
Police are investigating whether the Putticks "were so overcome with grief at their son's fairly sudden death that they decided they could not bear to go on without him," a source told the Mail.
The family's neighbors were stunned by the deaths.
"It is a terrible tragedy and I can't believe it has happened," one told the newspaper. "This is too shocking for words."
Another said that Kazumi, 44, and Neil, 34, were devoted to their child. "They were a lovely couple and they did 150 per cent for that boy."
The Daily Mail has more details on the probe.
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People deal with grief in different ways, but it is always sad to see grief carried out to such tragic consequences. When this happens---we are always left with questions of how, why and what if? We also wonder---could this event have been avoided or not? What should have the church done to have helped this situation before it got to that point? Anyways, my condolences to the Puttick family and may God be with them!