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Wednesday, 4 September, 2002, 20:47 GMT 21:47 UK
Lottery winner's cyanide suicide
Dennis Elwell
Dennis Elwell won 92,000 on the lottery
A lottery winner killed himself after dreams of a new life turned sour, an inquest was told.

Dennis Elwell drank cyanide just seven months after winning a share of a million pound jackpot because he was so unhappy.

Mr Elwell, 49, from Shropshire, had moved out to Spain with his wife Vivienne but returned to the UK alone, the inquest was told.

Telford and Wrekin coroner Michael Gwynne recordered a verdict of suicide at the hearing on Wednesday.

Vivienne Elwell
Vivienne Elwell: life in Spain went downhill

Factory worker Mr Elwell was part of a 12-strong works syndicate which won 1.1 million last year, giving each member winnings of 92,000.

He sold the family home in Highley in the Severn Valley and moved to Spain with his wife.

Mrs Elwell told the inquest that the first month abroad was great but things went downhill.

Her husband tried to kill himself three times, she told the hearing.

She decided to remain in Spain while he returned to England, she said.

Mrs Elwell sent text messages to her husband telling him she was not coming back.

Mr Elwell said he could not live without her but could not return to Spain.

Fatal dose

On the morning he died he sent her a text simply saying 'Goodbye Love.

He went to work at the Leonardt and Co pen factory in Highley where he took the fatal dose of cyanide.

He was a safety officer at the factory and would have known the effect of the chemical, the coroner was told.

Mr Elwell's brother-in-law Terance Fielding told the hearing they had been laughing together over a cup of tea in the works canteen.

But moments later Mr Elwell ran up to him and said: "Tes, I've done some cyanide, I can't live without her."

He died before reaching hospital.


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11 Jul 02 | England
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