news

Family and friends walk in tribute to young dad Chris Owen who took his own life

The 32-year-old was found hanged in Pugneys Country Park in Wakefield earlier this year

Chris Owens' parents Gary Owen and Rosie Taylor and his younger brother Gareth Owen walked 15 miles round the Colne Valley in his memory.

A walk has taken place around the Colne Valley in memory of a dad who took his own life.

Chris Owen was found hanged in Pugneys Country Park in Wakefield on May 10. The 32-year-old had three stepchildren and a two-year-old son.

His family, his friends and even strangers came together for 15 mile walk around the Colne Valley, where he was originally from, to raise awareness of suicide. It took place yesterday (Sunday) on World Suicide Prevention Day.

His dad Gary Owen, 58, said: “I would like to thank every single person that gave their day up to go on the walk.

Christopher Owen and his dad Gary Owen

“If everybody was as nice and thoughtful as the people that came with us today then the world would be a better place.

“All their hearts were on one thought only - to bring awareness of this horrendous illness.”

The walk raised money for mental health charity Mind and male suicide prevention group Andy’s Man Club.

Male suicide is the single biggest killer of men under the age of 45 in the UK. In 2015, 75% of all UK suicides were male.

Chris’ fiance Charlotte Naven said: “Christopher would never have referred to himself as a stepdad.

Chris Owens' parents Gary Owen and Rosie Taylor and his younger brother Gareth Owen walked 15 miles round the Colne Valley in his memory.

“He raised our children and was an amazing dad, not only to our two-year-old but our other three children.

“It’s hard knowing our children will read articles about him in years to come.

“Their dad did try to beat his depression and paranoia, but in the end lack of NHS input contributed to him ‘taking the easy option’.

“He wrote this in one of the 12 letters he wrote before he ended it.”

View full mobile page