Alcohol-related seizure led to St Albans man's death

PUBLISHED: 14:57 12 March 2009 | UPDATED: 14:01 06 May 2010

A SEIZURE linked to alcohol dependency is thought to have caused a man to suffocate in his pillow in his sleep. Eamonn Kenna, aged 47, died at the home he shared with his mother in Tavistock Close, St Albans, in November last year. At an inquest into his

A SEIZURE linked to alcohol dependency is thought to have caused a man to suffocate in his pillow in his sleep.

Eamonn Kenna, aged 47, died at the home he shared with his mother in Tavistock Close, St Albans, in November last year.

At an inquest into his death today (Thursday) it was heard that Mr Kenna had a long history of alcohol dependence which had caused him to have seizures in the past.

He had also been coughing up blood in the weeks leading up to his death but his mother, Philomena Kenna, said he had refused to see a doctor.

She last saw her son alive in the early hours of the morning the day of his death.

Having gone out in the morning, she returned home at around 4pm and took a cup of coffee up to Mr Kenna's bedroom but found him face down on his pillow and cold to the touch.

She called the ambulance service which confirmed he was dead at the scene.

A post-mortem revealed that Mr Kenna died from cardio-respiratory failure due to positional asphyxiation. Liver changes were also detected as was cannabis in his body. Herts coroner Edward Thomas recorded a death of natural causes, which included the alcohol dependence as a secondary factor.

He told Mr Kenna's mother, whose son had lived with her all his life: "It must have been awful. I can assure you that you did everything right and there is nothing you could have done further because when this happened it would have happened extremely quickly.

"It's as though he died in his sleep. In effect he did - if he felt something his face wouldn't have been turned over. If this happens, even if you are very close by, there is not much you can do about it. I know that's been worrying you, so don't worry any more.

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