Tragic death of 11-year-old is still a mystery

REMEMBERED Harvey with his grandad Andy Ashworth
REMEMBERED Harvey with his grandad Andy Ashworth
Oxford Circus tube station has been closed after a police incident

Oxford Circus tube station closed after police ‘incident’

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THE grieving parents of an 11-year-old boy will never know how their son died.

Harvey Ashworth was at the beginning of a two-week holiday in Greece with his dad Luke and stepmum Georgia when he was found dead in bed.

Yesterday, a coroner ruled that the youngster’s death was due to natural causes but the exact reason still remains a mystery.

The Portsmouth inquest heard Harvey had suffered from anxiety issues which started in 2010 around the time his mum, Trisha Griffin, moved to Spain.

It got worse and he suffered from panic attacks and fits where he would stop breathing, the inquest was told.

His dad said Harvey had suffered a couple of mild panic attacks the day before he died but they weren’t serious and went away quickly.

Mr Ashworth said that on the family holiday in July last year, he spent 20 minutes carrying out relaxation exercises with Harvey, before he went to sleep at the hotel.

In the morning, Harvey’s stepmum found him lifeless in his bed in the hotel room.

‘I heard an ear-piercing scream – I ran into the room,’ said Mr Ashworth.

‘I decided to get some air into him but his jaw was locked.

‘Then when it seemed there wasn’t a pulse at all I tried to do CPR.’

Paramedics were unable to revive Harvey and a post mortem examination held after his body was repatriated failed to find a cause of death. Pathologist Dr Adnan Al-Badri said Harvey, of Fleet End Road in Warsash, who went to West Hill Park School, near Titchfield, could have been suffering from a form of epilepsy.

He said it was possible he died of sudden unexpected death in epilepsy, but there is no way of proving it.

Speaking of the holiday to Thesprotia in Greece last July, Harvey’s dad Luke said: ‘It was a holiday I did every year with him for two weeks.

‘He was always very excited because it was a very active holiday.

‘On the plane he was very happy.

‘He was falling about laughing.’

David Horsley, coroner for Portsmouth and South East Hampshire, recorded a verdict of natural causes.

He said: ‘Everything here seems to point to a death due to natural causes.

‘It’s very difficult to understand because Harvey seemed to be such a healthy young boy apart from these problems with panic attacks.

‘It does seem a strong possibility that a form of epilepsy would have been here before he died.

‘But the evidence isn’t here to support it.

‘I do wish we could put a finger on it more accurately than that.

‘It must be a very difficult thing for Harvey’s friends and for all his family to understand how a healthy young boy can suddenly die like that without warning.’

Addressing the family, Mr Horsley added: ‘It’s a terrible shock for you all.

‘I would like to express to you and everyone else my deepest sympathies.’