Lesbian doctor died by suicide after breakup

PinkNews Staff Writer September 24, 2009
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A inquest has heard that a senior radiologist killed herself after splitting with her civil partner.

Dr Jane Jackson, 48, worked at the Cumberland Infirmary in Carlisle and West Cumberland Hospital, Whitehaven.

She had a civil partnership with Marie Burnham, a former chief executive of Cumbria Hospitals, since December 2005.

According to the News and Star, the inquest heard that strain was placed on the couple’s relationship with Burnham accepted a new job in Blackburn, east Lancashire.

As Jackson did not want to leave her job in Cumberland, the couple agreed to have a long-distance relationship to save Burnham from driving long distances each day.

Burnham told the inquest she had begun to have doubts about the relationship and had met someone else.

After she and Jackson had a holiday together in Florida, she decided to end the relationship and asked several friends to keep an eye on Jackson, who she feared would take the break-up badly.

When Jackson mentioned suicide in a phone call on the day before her death, Burnham said she was so worried she thought about calling the mental health trust’s crisis management team.

However, Jackson said she had not meant the threat.

She was found dead by friends the next day, having hung herself in her garage.

Coroner David Roberts said there were no suspicious circumstances and he was satisfied she had intended to die by suicide.

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