Teenager who believed suicide was a sin sent tragic ‘goodbye’ text night before he was found dead


Christian teenager, 16, who believed suicide was a sin sent his ex-girlfriend string of messages and tragic final ‘goodbye’ text the night before he was found dead at bottom of cliffs

  • Anthony Cavanagh sent the girl tragic messages between 3.48am and 4.34am
  • He researched falling from height, tide times and air velocity in the early hours 
  • Anthony was found on rocks below a 50-foot high cliff at Orcombe Point  
  • For confidential support call Samaritans on 116 123 or visit samaritans.org 

A Christian teenager who believed suicide was a sin sent his ex-girlfriend a string of messages and a final goodbye text the night before he was found dead at the bottom of a cliff.   

Anthony Cavanagh, 16, sent the girl messages between 3.48am and 4.34am saying ‘are you awake’, ‘apparently not’, ‘just want to say I’m sorry’, ‘I love you so much’, ‘you are the most perfect person’ and finally ‘goodbye’. 

He had also researched falling from height, tide times, air velocity and falling on to a hard surface during the early hours on his phone.

An inquest at Exeter’s County Hall heard yesterday that his body was found on rocks below a 50-foot high cliff at Orcombe Point, Exmouth, Devon, last August.

Anthony Cavanagh's body was found on rocks below a 50-foot high cliff at Orcombe Point, Exmouth, Devon, last August

Anthony Cavanagh’s body was found on rocks below a 50-foot high cliff at Orcombe Point, Exmouth, Devon, last August

The inquest heard he had just received his GCSE results and he was due to go to college to study maths, chemistry, philosophy and religion and he intended to join the Army.

His mother Roxanne said they were left ‘devastated and absolutely shocked’ by his death.

She said her son was a ‘loyal, patient, well liked, forgiving’ lad who was a private person with a ‘strong moral compass’.

She said he had strong Christian beliefs and wore a cross and he considered suicide was a sin.

An inquest at Exeter's County Hall heard yesterday that Anthony sent the girl messages between 3.48am and 4.34am saying 'are you awake', 'apparently not', 'just want to say I'm sorry', 'I love you so much', 'you are the most perfect person' and finally 'goodbye'

An inquest at Exeter's County Hall heard yesterday that Anthony sent the girl messages between 3.48am and 4.34am saying 'are you awake', 'apparently not', 'just want to say I'm sorry', 'I love you so much', 'you are the most perfect person' and finally 'goodbye'

An inquest at Exeter’s County Hall heard yesterday that Anthony sent the girl messages between 3.48am and 4.34am saying ‘are you awake’, ‘apparently not’, ‘just want to say I’m sorry’, ‘I love you so much’, ‘you are the most perfect person’ and finally ‘goodbye’

The inquest was told the daring teenager liked parkour – running and jumping from point to point in a complex environment, usually a city, in the fastest way.

His family knew of a small ledge on the cliffs, protected by a fence, where teens got through and went and Anthony was found beneath it.

No notes were found and the coroner heard Anthony had jumped out of his bedroom window to leave his family home in Exmouth that night.

He died from a severe head injury.

The senior Devon coroner Philip Spinney said Anthony died from a head injury sustained in a fall from height from a cliff.

The inquest heard he told a girlfriend he had been overwhelmed and suffered some panic attacks but it was unclear what his intentions were and it was possible he intended to take his own life but the coroner said the circumstances in which he fell are not known and Anthony had plans for the future.

No alcohol or drugs were detected in his toxicology.

For confidential support call Samaritans on 116 123 or visit samaritans.org 

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