A POPULAR amateur footballer died as a result of an accident, an inquest heard.

Lee Pennycuick, 31, of Colchester, was found dead in the early hours of October 22.

A post mortem examination found he had died from hanging.

Lee’s dad John Pennycuick, who did not attend the inquest on Friday, said the decision had brought closure for the entire family.

He said: “It has brought us comfort and answered some questions.

“I take a step forward everyday. I look in the past and I learn from my mistakes, I don’t stand still.

“If you dwell on it you will be hurt for a long time.

“My light at the end of my tunnel are my two grandkids.

“I know it has only been a month but we are moving on now.”

Ground worker Lee played football for Brightlingsea Regent’s Sunday team, who have retired the number three shirt in his memory.

Lee had three brothers.

He was born in Germany while his dad was stationed there with the Royal Scottish Regiment.

The family then moved to Inverness, in Scotland, before arriving in Colchester 21 years ago.

Four years ago, Mr Pennycuick’s job as a kit man for the Scottish Rugby Union took the family to Edinburgh but Lee did not want to leave Colchester.

Mr Pennycuick, who lives in Edinburgh, will be holding a memorial for Lee next week for the friends and family who were not able to attend the funeral in Colchester.

Maldon and Burnham Standard:

Lee’s ashes will then return to Essex in the New Year, when they will be scattered at a special burial spot in Wrabness.

Mr Pennycuick said: “I think we brought Lee up well.

“His mum and I both had bad upbringings and we said we would never be like our parents and Lee is a testament to that with the amount of people he helped in his short life.

“I really want to thank everyone for their support.

“We are still getting great support from all his friends and their parents.

“It’s helped us tremendously.”