Seventh suspected suicide recorded in Manchester

Custos urges kindness among residents, courage to seek professional help

BY ALICIA SUTHERLAND
Observer staff reporter
sutherlanda@jamaicaobserver.com

Wednesday, December 05, 2018

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MANDEVILLE, Manchester — Custos of Manchester Sally Porteous yesterday urged residents to show kindness to each other, at all times, as one can never be sure of the troubling personal issues being experienced by others.

She was speaking to the Jamaica Observer as the parish recorded its seventh suspected suicide since the start of the year.

“It reminds us, again, that we all have to be very careful with each other, as we can never tell what is going on in another person's mind. I wish we will all have the courage and the acumen, when we feel sad and depressed, to get help,” the chief justice of the peace emphasised.

Porteous said, too, that if it is a situation that warrants professional assistance, there should be no stigma attached to it.

Police in Manchester confirmed yesterday that of the number of suspected suicides in the parish for 2018, six were men.

The latest occurred yesterday morning, when 33-year-old businessman Jason Neil was found shot in the bathroom of his home in the upscale community of Ingleside.

Police reports are that about 7:00 am, his wife heard an explosion and when she went to investigate, Neil was allegedly seen on the floor with his licensed firearm beside him.

He was confirmed dead at hospital.

The home at Julie Drive and a section of the community were cordoned off by police investigators, and up to late yesterday, the incident was still being treated as a suspected suicide.

Neil is one of the proprietors of the second-generation family-owned business, Neil's Auto Service, located on Ward Avenue in Mandeville.

Porteous said that she is familiar with the family.

“I am so shocked and deeply, deeply saddened. My heart goes out to the family,” she said.

President of the Manchester Chamber of Commerce Garfield Green said that Neil's death is a great loss to the business community.

He said through his interactions with him, Neil was easy to talk to and helpful.

On social media, Neil was remembered by friends as “a beautiful soul gone too soon”, “humble”, and “jovial”.

“Mandeville has lost one of its most hard-working sons. A man who studied to show himself approved,” one friend said, noting that though he could drive a truck from the age of 14, he took the time to do the necessary studies as he prepared himself to make a mark on the family business.

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