abrupt goodbyes

The Mysterious Hanging Suicide Of Lottery Winner Richard Lang

Lottery winners all too often find themselves with hangers-on after their new fortunes are announced. But for Richard Lang, who won £867,454 in a 2005 drawing and hanged himself in May, the man claiming to be his lover is a complete stranger to Lang’s family.

Joshua Jones says he found Lang already dead in his Leicestershire home as Jones was getting ready to leave for work. The pair met online and had a sexual relationship, but were not exactly committed, a British court’s inquest heard today. And while Jones was living with Lang, Lang’s loved ones didn’t even know he existed.

The pair had met on the internet, the inquest was told. Coroner Martin Gotheridge told the court at Leicester Town Hall it seemed Mr Lang had a ‘number of lives’. Mr Jones, now living in Wrexham, was not at the inquest today, but two statements were read to the court by the coroner. He said on May 17 Mr Lang, who carried on working as a British Waterways engineer despite his lottery win in 2005, came back from work as usual at 4.30pm.

‘He went into the dining room and sorted out some paperwork, I thought that was unusual as he could do that at any time and it wasn’t what he usually did in the evenings,’ his statement said. He said the couple ate dinner, watched a film then went to bed at about 11pm. The coroner said: ‘He then says that they slept together and Lang would often say that sex was pointless and everything was pointless as nothing made him excited or interested.’

The following morning Mr Lang got up at 7.40am as normal – the inquest heard he was usually picked up by a colleague at 8am. Mr Jones’s statement said: ‘I usually heard the TV come on as Lang usually watches the news as he eats his breakfast. ‘I heard something else on the TV, it was much louder than usual. ‘I was half asleep and I heard some noises on the stairs which I assumed was Lang getting ready for work.’ But he said when he heard the van arrive, he noticed Mr Lang did not leave the house as normal. ‘After approximately five minutes I thought it was strange that the van was still out on the driveway so I went downstairs.

‘As I looked down to the ground floor I thought I saw Lang kneeling on the floor. ‘I went down the stairs where I realised Lang was hanging.’

There was no suicide note, and no drugs or alcohol in Lang’s system. His family says he never showed signs of sadness or depression and had recently enjoyed some time at home with his mother. Which basically leaves everyone, from Lang’s family to his companion Jones, wondering WTF happened. [Daily Mail]