Wednesday 21 August 2019

Man with 'chronic shyness' lay dead at home for several weeks

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Louise Roseingrave

A man who suffered from "chronic shyness" had been dead in his home for some weeks before he was found.

Gregory Sharp (69), from St Peter's Avenue in Cabra, Dublin, was a private individual who lived alone, an inquest heard. His body was found in an upstairs bedroom on July 31, 2017.

The former Phillip's Electrical worker had cared for his mother at the family home until her death more than 20 years ago.

In retirement he rarely interacted with anyone, Dublin Coroner's Court heard.

Mr Sharp's sister Valerie Sharp said: "He suffered from chronic shyness, if anyone knocked at the door he would run upstairs. I wrote to him many times but he would never reply. He wouldn't like to put his feelings down on paper."

Neighbour Pat McGee said she called gardaí when she noticed flies in the window of the man's home. She put a note through his letter box. "He was shy and reserved and kept to himself," she said.

Garda Jack Beckett of Mountjoy garda station said he went to the house on the morning of July 31 following a call from Mrs McGee and found Mr Sharp's body.

In the kitchen, he found milk with a sell-by date in early July and a newspaper from around the same period. Unopened post dated from July 7.

Death was pronounced at the scene and Mr Sharp was identified through DNA profiling.

A post mortem conducted by Professor Eamon Leen could not establish why the man had died.

"Death had occurred a significant time before anyone entered the property," Coroner Dr Myra Cullinane said.

"Given where he was found the most likely thing is that he collapsed in his bedroom," she said.

The coroner returned an open verdict.

Irish Independent

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