Family's heartache goes on after inquest rules that tragic South Shields dad took his own life

The family of a tragic young dad who was found dead on an oil rig say their 'heartache goes on' after an inquest concluded he took his own life.

Ben Malloy pictured with partner Fay Sarson.
Ben Malloy pictured with partner Fay Sarson.

Ben Malloy, who lived in Snowberry Grove, South Shields with partner Fay Sarson and their two young children Faith, 5, and six-month-old Marcus, died suddenly while working offshore in Denmark last month.

An inquest held into the 25-year-old’s death at South Tyneside Coroner’s Court ruled that he ended his own life, but the “precice cause and circumstances” would remain unknown.

Recording a narrative verdict, South Tyneside coroner Terence Carney concluded; “The deceased has ended his life, the precise cause and circumstances being unknown.”

Hundreds of friends and family turned out to pay a touching final tribute to Ben at two funeral services held in the town.

Ben’s family say they are still struggling to come to terms with his sudden loss but have vowed to concentrate their efforts on supporting his two children.

Ben’s stepfather, Colin Campbell said: “The heartache goes on and on for all of the family.

It is difficult not to think of Ben wherever you go, when you see a young man pushing a pram or a man of a similar stature just walking in the street, the feelings just kick in.

“It will take a long, long time to come to terms with Ben’s loss. All our concentration is now on Ben’s two children.”

Mr Campbell and Ben’s mum, Carol, 49, and younger brother Dominic, 19, were left heartbroken after the former St Wilfrid’s RC College was found dead in his cabin while working on an oil rig on Sunday, December 13.

He had been due to return home on leave from his role with global offshore drilling firm Ensco to spend the festive period with his family just days later.

Mr Campbell described Ben as a ’life-force’ in an emotional tribute paid to his stepson after his death.

He said; “Ben was like a life-force. He was a very bubbly and confident guy. He was a larger-than-life character and was so popular with everyone.

“It was his ultimate goal to work on an oil rig and he achieved that last year.

“He did 12-hour shifts, worked very hard and was so well thought of by the company.”

“He was always an adventurer.”

Mum Carol added: “He was a devoted dad, a very kind-hearted son and a very hard worker who wanted to provide for his family.”

Mourners packed St Michael’s Church, in Westoe Road, South Shields, for a service of remembrance before a huge turn-out at South Shields Crematorium for a ‘celebration’ of the devoted dad-of-two’s life.

The second service at South Shields Crematorium saw dozens of mourners listen to the service from outside on the public address system.

Humanist minister Ray Wood urged friends and family to ‘smile’ for Ben to help honour his life.