Euthanasia Couple Died Together in Gas-Filled Car

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Byline: Campbell Docherty

An

elderly couple gassed themselves in their car because they could not bear the thought of one dying before the other, an inquest heard yesterday.

Rona and Helmut Mey-Hilton, aged 82 and 80 respectively, were found in each other's arms in the garage at their home in Stratford-upon-Avon, Warwickshire.

The inquest at Leamington Spa Town Hall heard how retired mechanical engineering expert Mr Mey-Hilton 'spoke incessantly of euthanasia' and that the couple frequently insisted they would never be parted.

They took their lives on June 13, a day after Mr Mey-Hilton was discharged from hospital, where he had had a catheter fitted for bladder problems. Mrs Mey-Hilton had undergone a triple heart bypass in recent years.

Gloria Vinning, a neighbour who had arranged to go shopping with the couple that morning, became concerned when she received no answer at the front door.

Entering the house with a spare set of keys, Mrs Vinning discovered the pensioners in their Mercedes with a hosepipe attached to the exhaust feeding through a window into the car.

After the inquest, Mrs Vinning toldThe Birmingham Post: 'Mr Mey-Hilton was a very clever man. I am not sure of the terminology but in the past he developed cutting edge piston technology for BMW and I know he wrote books. He was a leading authority on engineering.

'They were a lovely couple, very polite and they kept themselves to themselves. They were growing old gracefully.

'They were not morbid people but we knew from conversations with them that they had no intention of ending up in nursing homes and they mentioned euthanasia quite a lot. …