AN elderly man who had suffered from depression for years was found dead one day before he was due to receive extra help, a coroner heard on Wednesday.

Lawrence Marron, of Belfast Avenue, Slough, got out of bed at seven in the morning on May 28 this year and made his breakfast as usual, before leaving home. An hour-and-a-half later he was found drowned in a lake in Black Park Country Park, just 10 minutes from his home.

The 71-year-old had battled mental health problems for years and had been prescribed a number of different medicines to help with his depression and anxiety.

Mr Marron had grown concerned over the Olanzepine he had been prescribed because the side effects left him with aches and pains in his body and a burning sensation in his face, an inquest at Beaconsfield Coroner’s Court heard on Wednesday.

In a statement read out at the hearing, his wife Rosaleen said: “My husband has always suffered from depression and in February this year he started suffering from suicidal thoughts.

“He was admitted to Prospect Park Hospital in Reading for treatment, but perhaps a year before this he had taken a taxi to Black Park near our home and my son told me it was because he had intended to take his own life.

“When he returned he denied he had ever been to the park, but my son said he had intended to take his life but it was so busy at the park he did not do it.

“Lawrence said his medication was not right and he started having suicidal thoughts, so he had an appointment booked with a community mental health team called New Horizons on May 29.”

Mr Marron’s body was found dead just one day before he was due to get the help he needed from the community mental health team.

In the short time on May 28 between waking up and his death, Mr Marron called a taxi and asked to be driven to Black Park. He paid his fare and let the driver keep the change.

It was the last anyone saw of him alive.

Around 45 minutes later he was spotted floating in the lake by two women dog walkers who at first thought it was a dummy.

Fire crews were on scene to recover the body before he was pronounced dead by paramedics.

His cause of death was later concluded as drowning.

Prior to his death, Mr Marron had made an attempt on his life after taking an overdose of his medication.

He was seen by senior mental health practitioner Elizabeth Mugwagwa at Wexham Park Hospital on May 15 – five days after swallowing around 28 of his prescribed tablets.

Mr Marron admitted he had attempted to take his own life because he could no longer deal with the painful side effects of the medication for his depression and anxiety.

It was agreed that attempts would be made to review his medication so it could be changed and that a crisis resolution team would monitor his mental state and the risks he posed to himself through home visits and a phone service.

Recording a narrative verdict, Anne Davies, assistant coroner for Buckinghamshire, said: “I am aware Mr Marron expressed wishes to take his life and made several attempts but we have a gap of about 30 minutes where other explanations of how he came to be in the lake come into play.

“He could have had a fall, he could have tripped. It could have been a complete accident.

“It happened during a time that the park was really quiet so no one was able to see what actually happened.

“It would be mere speculation to consider that between dropping him off at Black Park at 7.40am and seeing him in the lake at 8.12am he had taken his own life.”