The family of a “thoughtful and kind” man who endured a lifelong struggle with depression have spoken of their heartbreak after his body was found near a Welsh beach.
Roger Howell, from Dinas Cross in Pembrokeshire, went missing from his home last month.
His family have said they believe Mr Howell’s struggle with depression “became too much”, and they have implored other people who may be struggling with mental health issues to reach out and seek support.
“Roger left an impression on all he met,” his family said.
“He was a mercurial man – loud, entertaining, unpredictable, tenacious, thoughtful and kind.
“Underneath his natural exuberance for people and life he hid a lifelong struggle with depression. Tragically, this struggle became too much.
“His family and friends are heartbroken. He protected us from the true extent of his pain – this has been a huge shock.
“Charismatic and socially inappropriate, Roger lived his life to the full, with the volume turned up to max. He loved his family with an untameable ferocity.
“We want him to walk through the door and make us laugh again or recite medieval French literature or set the hoover on fire or give us one of those big cuddles. He’s not going to. All we can hope now is that others who are struggling with their mental health will speak up and get help.”
Mr Howell was reported missing on Wednesday, June 17.
A large search ensued focusing on the Pwllgwaelod area of Pembrokeshire, between Newport and Fishguard, involving police, RNLI teams and the coastguard.
Shortly before 11pm that night, Mr Howell’s body was found near the beach. He was 63.
For confidential support the Samaritans can be contacted for free around the clock 365 days a year on 116 123. More details around perinatal mental health, including treatments and support options, are available from charity Mind by going here.
Mr Howell’s family added: “We would like to thank the police, coastguard and all the emergency services who worked tirelessly on the day he went missing, and have continued to support the family.”
“We would also like to thank our community who have helped and supported us. They have been overwhelmingly generous with their compassion, time, love and lasagne. Thank you – it has meant so much.
“We would like some time now to grieve and heal.”
Mr Howell’s funeral will take place on Friday afternoon in a private ceremony at Narberth Crematorium, after a procession has left the family home in Dinas Cross and travelled through Newport.