Marcus Armstrong

Marcus was 28 years old when he died. Two days previously he was at home when he felt ill. He was short of breath, sweating and had chest pains – the symptoms were identical to when he was rushed to hospital a few years earlier. Back then it was diagnosed as a panic attack after lots of tests and 4 hours in the hospital. Marcus told his partner Lucy he would be fine as he didn’t want to go back into hospital again. The next day he felt better and went to work as a Taxi driver in Harwich but his mum was insistent he went to the doctors for a check up. He reluctantly went, they did an ECG test, blood pressure and other checks, and was assured everything was fine. The next day he collapsed and died. The post mortem gave the cause of death as Haemopericardium and dissection of the ascending thoracic aorta. Marcus was not overweight, hardly ever drank and regularly played his favourite game of golf. He was a single figure golfer and represented his club, Harwich & Dovercourt, on several occasions. There are now three trophies which are played for annually in his memory. He lived in Colchester with Lucy, his partner of 6 years. They had only lived in their new house for 5 months, and Lucy was qualified as a teacher of music in Colchester. Marcus was very proud of her achievements. He had won a competition on the local radio station, and had 2 tickets to a music festival in Hampshire for that weekend. He spoke to his mum on the phone and then told Lucy how much he loved her before going out to fit his satellite navigation in his car for the following morning’s journey to the concert. Ten minutes after going out of the front door he was found dead by the side of his car. The hospital said it was instantaneous and he never suffered – but that is no consolation to those left behind. Marcus was so popular and loved by everyone. So many people had so many happy memories and stories about him. He always believed you should live life to the full and this he had done. His death has left a massive void in so many people’s lives. After 14 months Lucy still struggles with him not there. Lucy and her friend Jaye held a piano concert in Marcus’ memory in May 2007 and all the proceeds went to CRY. Jackie Armstrong