A young teacher died after stepping in front of an express train just 12 hours after he broke off his engagement, an inquest heard today.
Jacob Standbridge, 21, died under the wheels of the high speed passenger locomotive after he texted his mother saying: "'I love you mum so much. Thank you for everything you have done for me. I’m so sorry’".
Jacob - also known as Jake - suffered multiple injuries in the 6.30am impact on October 13 last year at Sandbach railway station in Cheshire and died at the scene.
He had split up with fiancée Ciera Barnes the previous evening after he became upset about texts he found on her phone but a coroner ruled it was not clear whether he intended to take his own life.
An inquest heard the sports teacher from Sandbach had played in midfield for the Stoke City Academy and other clubs.
After studying a BTECH in sports management he was offered a job providing sports training programs for local schools.
He proposed to Ciera during a trip to New York in 2017 and the pair bought a house together.
But an inquest heard their relationship became troubled around the same time he began taking steroid injections.
His mother Karen told the Warrington hearing: ''Sometime in January 2016 Jacob met Ciera, although he had had lots of casual girlfriends she was his first love and became part of the family.
''But it seemed to be in the last seven to eight weeks of his life that things with Ciera became rocky, and this coincided with the period he started to use steroid injections."
The mother said the pair almost cancelled a holiday over texts that Jacob found but worked through the situation.
She told the inquest that Jacob had called her on the evening of October 12 to say it was over between him and Ciera, before he came over to the house.
She said that around 5.30am the following morning she heard someone downstairs and saw Jacob reversing his car off the drive.
She then received a text about an hour later saying: ‘I love you mum so much thank you for everything you have done for me, I’m so sorry', the hearing was told. The text was the last message she received from him.
Mrs Standbridge added: ''Jacob was always on the go and was very popular with the kids and the head teachers, a number of schools refused to have anybody else.
"He was extremely ambitious and driven but also loving and extremely proud of what he achieved. He was well respected by the staff, governors and parents. He told me on the Friday he had a meeting with Premier Sports who were offering a free franchise.
“He applied for the apprentice and made it through to the final selection. He did compare himself to how others were doing on social media and this was an added pressure but I feel at that what happened was totally out of character for Jacob.
"At the time of his death he wasn’t in his right mind for whatever reason and I feel that he wanted to be out of pain in that moment - I firmly believe that.
“When he left the house he was dressed in shorts and a hoodie and he hated the cold and I believe he was going back to Ciera to sort things out.''
Ciera told the hearing: “He took the steroids between July and the August but his reaction to situations or arguments that maybe weren’t a huge thing would be escalated - maybe in terms of it being blown out of proportion or overthinking of a scenario.
"Jacob told me he was going to withdraw and go to the doctors he told us all that he went to the doctors, it was only after his death that we found out he didn’t go.''
Recording an open verdict assistant coroner Heath Westerman said: “The messages could indicate an intention to end his life but I cannot conclude that they do so to the required standard of probability. The messages could be interpreted as general messages as thank you for helping me.
“The messages didn’t indicate a conscious decision to end his own life or explicitly say that was his intention to do so.
“He was normally a resilient, strong lad who coped well with the blows of life. He had everything to live for, the love of his family and friends, a bright and successful future beckoned for him. There are strong reasons why I couldn’t find the necessary intentions to take his own life.''
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