An inquest, on April 18, has revealed that 'Love Island' star Sophie Gradon was found hanging at her parents' home in Northumberland aged 32 last year after taking both alcohol and cocaine together. The hearing noted that the former Love Island star, 32, had been 'devastated' by the recent death of close friend Paul Burns. The new inquest came after Sophie's family insisted that the death was not a suicide.
Northumberland South coroner Eric Armstrong was quoted by the BBC as saying that he was "certain she would not have acted as she did without taking alcohol and cocaine". He said that North Shields Coroner's Court research in the USA suggested someone was 16 times more likely to take their life if they consumed both. "If Sophie's death is to serve any purpose at all, that message must go out far and wide," he added.
Gradon, who had more than 400,000 followers on Instagram, was crowned Miss Newcastle and Miss Great Britain in 2009 and featured on 'Love Island' in 2016. She had coupled with barman Tom Powell, and later, with glamour model Katy Salmon, in the reality show's first same-sex relationship. In June, she was found dead by her boyfriend Aaron, who was found dead at his home just 20 days later. Sophie was reportedly diagnosed with depression and low self-esteem in 2013 and was taking medication for social anxiety disorder at the time of her death.
The Northumbria Police department informed the hearing that Gradon had been exchanging messages with a male friend into the early hours of the day she died, in which she said she had had suicidal thoughts, that she was "struggling with the world" and every day with ADHD, and she "cannot do this anymore".
The inquest heard she was found hanging in the living room of her parents' home by her boyfriend and his brother. Aaron had attempted CPR for 15 minutes, in vain, quickly realizing that she was dead. He was concerned as he did not receive any messages from Gradon during the day. The pair had been exchanging messages until after 2:00 am but when he woke up after 11 am he got no reply from messages or phone calls.
Gradon's relationship with Aaron had begun a little over a month before her death and her parents said they didn't get to meet him. Aaron had been in a relationship with the former beauty queen since May 2018.