Heart failure led to soldier’s death

AN ARMY sergeant from Scarborough who fought in Afghanistan and Iraq died aged 39 after suffering acute heart failure, an inquest heard.

Staff Sergeant Stuart Jones, who served with 4 Regiment Army Air Corps and was based at Wattisham Airfield, was found collapsed in a bedroom at his home in Demoiselle Crescent, Ravenswood, Ipswich, on Monday May 16.

The former Raincliffe School student was laid to rest with full military honours at St Mark’s Church in Coldyhill Lane.

The inquest, presided over by Greater Suffolk Coroner Peter Dean at Ip-City Centre in Bath Street, Ipswich, heard Sgt Jones had suffered problems with his appendix and was forced to undergo an emergency operation.

He recorded a verdict of natural causes at the inquest, and attributed the death to acute heart failure due to Sudden Adult Death Syndrome.

“He had back problems but was a very active person,” Dr Dean said. “He had been unwell since his appendix operation.”

He was found by his housemate, Henry Luck, who knew Sgt Jones had been unwell and “unable to keep his food down”.

Just days before his death, Sgt Jones reported to Wattisham and said he felt nauseous and queasy.

Dr Dean added: “The initial postmortem examination gave a cause of death of unascertained. There was also nothing on the toxicology report.

“The heart was then sent to a specialist in cardio-pathology.

“She looked for a manner of issues but her feeling was that this was essentially a cardiac death.”

He said the operation was not directly linked to the death, but said that there may have been “some disturbance in the heart” which stopped it from functioning.

Sgt Jones had been with the military for 22 years, including three operational tours, and was preparing to leave the service later this year.