Lee Collins: 1988-2021

*Warning, this article contains discussions around mental health and suicide. The author of this article is not a medical professional and would therefore encourage any readers who have been affected by this content to get in touch with the mental health and suicide prevention charity CALM or Samaritans. Please call Samaritans at 116 123 for 24/7 support, or contact CALM at 0800 58 58 58, helpline open 5pm-12pm.*

At FC Not Alone, we were incredibly saddened to hear of the passing of Yeovil Town captain Lee Collins aged just 32 years old last week, and we are even more devastated to hear confirmation that he took his own life. Whilst Collins’ death shocked the football world, the cause of his death is sadly not so surprising. Suicide remains the biggest killer of men under the age of 45 in the UK.

Lee was not only a footballer; but a son, a husband, a father, a friend, and a role model to many. We must celebrate his life and his career, but also appreciate that he was one of many victims of mental health that suffered in silence.

Many have taken the opportunity to pay their respects to Lee by placing flowers, scarves, and messages of support and gratitude outside Yeovil Town’s Huish Park. Our thoughts go out to the family and friends of Lee, and all those at Yeovil Town Football Club.

It is important to take tragic events such as this as a marked reminder of the deeper issues within society regarding mental health and the effect that it can have on anyone. Mental health does not discriminate, and if you are suffering we hope you feel enabled to reach out to loved ones or to one of the many mental health charities that offer free support and guidance.

“Whatever you’re going through, a Samaritan will face it with you. We’re here 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.” Call 116 123 for free, or visit www.samaritans.org

“The Campaign Against Living Miserably (CALM) is leading a movement against suicide.” Call the CALM helpline at 0800 58 58 58 or chat online athttps://www.thecalmzone.net/help/webchat/ 5pm-12pm, 365 days a year.