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Family’s emotional thank you to Norfolk search teams

PUBLISHED: 08:00 10 December 2013 | UPDATED: 09:52 10 December 2013

Police and rescue teams have been searching woodland in Snettisham for missing Leziate man Andrew Simpson. Picture: Ian Burt

Police and rescue teams have been searching woodland in Snettisham for missing Leziate man Andrew Simpson. Picture: Ian Burt

Archant © 2013

The family of a man who committed suicide in a Norfolk wood sent an emotional thank you to search and rescue teams that spent days looking for him in freezing temperatures.

Andrew Simpson was found hanging from a tree in a wooded area in Common Road, Snettisham after going missing a week earlier.

The 48-year-old window cleaner, of Brow of the Hill, Leziate, had been suffering from severe depression for three years when he was reported missing on January 27 this year.

He had last been seen by his family three days earlier, when he hugged his brother David and his father before driving away.

Mr Simpson, who was part of the Jehovah’s Witnesses, had previously gone missing for nine months in 2010.

His disappearance sparked a huge search operation by Norfolk Police and Norfolk Lowland Search and Rescue teams, until volunteer Guy Farnbank discovered Mr Simpson’s body on February 3.

In an email to police officers and the Lowland Search and Rescue organisation a couple of weeks after the discovery, Mr Simpson’s brother Tim said: “On behalf of myself and my family, I would like to pass on my thanks and appreciation for the enormous effort in looking for my brother.

“We were very grateful the police sustained such a big effort to find him and keep the family fully informed in such a careful way.”

The family, who helped with the search, added that it meant: “We could at least say we had all done our very best to help Andrew.”

At an inquest into Mr Simpson’s death held at King’s Lynn County Court yesterday, Sgt Andrew Hughes praised Lowland Search and Rescue volunteers, saying it was “harrowing” search that took place in freezing weather.

Coroner Jacqueline Lake said she and the Simpson family were grateful for the efforts of the search teams.

She concluded that Mr Simpson took his own life. “Due to his history of depression, I am satisfied beyond reasonable doubt that he intended to take his own life,” she said.

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