Tributes have been paid to a loving father from Hastings who died from an overdose of prescription drugs.
Lewis Reynolds, 38, died in a caravan at the Coghurst Hall Holiday Park, off Ivyhouse Lane, Hastings, where he had been living, on December 21, 2018.
An inquest into his death, held in Hastings on Tuesday (July 23), heard he had taken an excessive amount of prescribed drugs, causing a ruptured gastric ulcer.
Despite attempts from paramedics to help, he was pronounced dead at the scene.
Speaking after the inquest, his wife of nine and a half years Emily said: “He was a much loved brother, husband, father, step father, uncle and son.
“He was a family man. He was very family orientated.”
His sister Anna described Lewis as being very protective of his three sisters and said he was ‘always up to mischief’.
She said a big change in his life came when his son Lewis Junior, who is now ten, was born.
Anna added: “He adored Lewis, he worshipped the ground he walked on. He turned his life around. He settled down and wasn’t getting into trouble anymore.
“He changed after Lewis. He wanted to show him everything and take him on as many holidays as possible.”
The inquest heard Lewis and Emily’s marriage broke down in March 2018 causing him to move out of the family home.
By October, he had moved into a caravan at Coghurst Hall where Anna said his condition worsened.
Heartbroken by the end of his marriage and unable to see his son, Lewis turned to alcohol and cocaine, as well as drugs he had been prescribed to control his mental health and help him sleep, the inquest heard.
On the day of his death Emily, who was concerned she had not heard from Lewis, visited him at his caravan where, through the window, she saw him staggering around before he collapsed onto the floor.
Emily called paramedics who managed to force entry into the caravan. Despite attempting CPR, Lewis was pronounced dead.
After the inquest, Emily said she would always remember her husband as a man who was very sociable and a brilliant dad.
Recalling holidays to locations such as Mexico, the Dominican Republic and Portugal, Emily said Lewis was ‘the life and soul of the party’ who made everyone laugh.
Anna described the impact of her brother’s death as ‘life-changing’, particular at family barbecues which were ‘all about him’.
She added: “It has left a massive hole. We will never be at peace with any of this. Nothing will ever be the same.
“I hope he has now found his peace. I feel that we’d rather have this pain than watch him suffering.
“He was in hell and it was never going to get better.”
Senior coroner for East Sussex Alan Craze returned a conclusion of suicide.