Jamie Buchan was enjoying family time with his mum and twin brother in his hometown — but less than 20 minutes later, he had taken his own life.
Now, his bereft mum Elayne said she finds it hard to accept what happened and refuses to believe that her son — who had a range of complex mental health issues — meant to kill himself.
Speaking at the family house in Forfar, Elayne said that it was during “five minutes of darkness” that everything went tragically wrong.
She said: “I really don’t think Jamie meant to die that night. He was excited about things he had planned for the coming weeks.”
However, Elayne also feels strongly that her son was badly let down by mental health services with “too little help coming too late”.
Jamie had battled with health conditions including cerebral palsy, deafness, ADHD and severe OCD since he and his brother Andrew were born 12 weeks prematurely.
Elayne said she also knew her son was autistic although he was only diagnosed by doctors two weeks before he died.
She said: “They refused to confirm that because they said they didn’t want to give him another ‘label’.”
Elayne said Jamie, who was also a brother to Kevin and Kyle, went to school in Kirriemuir and later worked at McDonald’s in Forfar for five years, a job she said he loved.
He also attended Dundee and Angus College. She said it was the death of his dad David, two years ago after a 10-year battle with cancer, which led to Jamie’s condition deteriorating.
She said: “Things got very much worse after David died.
“Jamie reacted very badly — he refused to open his eyes, he wouldn’t look at anybody and he became quite delusional.
“Very upsettingly, he also began to say he was going to kill himself. I don’t think he really meant it. I think he wanted to test our reaction to his threats.”
On the night Jamie died, Elayne had gone to Bar 10 in Forfar because Sex Pistol star Glen Matlock was to be there. She was joined by Jamie and Andrew.
Elayne said: “Jamie loved to meet as many celebrities as possible. The boys stayed for a little while then walked home.
“Jamie put on a DVD and went to make some noodles for his supper and it was then it happened. Andrew discovered him in the garden and phoned me quite hysterical.”
Elayne said she dashed home but it was too late. She said: “It was less than 20 minutes since they had left me. I don’t believe he meant it to happen. You don’t make your supper and then decide to take your own life.
“I’m so lost without Jamie and Andrew is beside himself.”
Jamie’s funeral will be held at the Lowson Memorial Church, Forfar, today, followed by the burial at Kirriemuir’s cemetery.
People in attendance have been asked to wear purple — Jamie’s favourite colour — or odd socks, which Jamie always wore.
A spokeswoman for Angus Health and Social Care Partnership said: “Our thoughts are with the family at this difficult time. Due to patient confidentiality we cannot discuss matters relating to individual patients.
“However, with any sudden or unexpected death we would review the care and treatment received by the patient with the involvement of their family and we would encourage the family to share any concerns they may have with us.”