Afghan war veteran jumped in front of train

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A traumatised Afghanistan veteran jumped in front of a train after quitting the RAF and experimenting with a hallucinogenic drug - an inquest heard.

Leading Aircraftman Sam Reason (28), of Melton, leapt to his death at Baker Street tube station in central London just 20 minutes after texting his girlfriend to ask her to collect his dry-cleaning.

The “honest, loving and caring young man” joined the RAF at 16 and served two tours of duty in Afghanistan with the logistics team before leaving in early 2014.

His father, James, told Westminster Coroner’s Court on Friday he believed his son decided to quit because of an unknown ‘trauma’ during his final tour.

“We don’t know what he had seen there but something had upset him. We feel like he either witnessed something personally - we don’t know, I can’t put my finger on it. Something made him say ‘I have had enough.’

“He was attracted by London and he sounded fine but in April 2014 he came to see us and he had changed a lot. He did become very insular. He was just totally unlike himself, very quiet.”

Sam then travelled to Amsterdam with friends to try the “shamanic” hallucinogen Ayahuasca, which originates in Amazonian Peru.

On his return he made plans to start a business and “wanted to change the world”, said his father.

“He was teaching yoga, he started going to church, he packed in drink. He was very strict about looking after his body.

“He was gathering information to start his business. It didn’t actually get going but he had made all the plans”, said Mr Reason.

But on November 25 last year, Sam jumped in front of a Jubilee Line train at 3.04pm and was killed instantly.

“We saw the texts on his phone”, Mr Reason said.

“Only 20 minutes beforehand he was asking his girlfriend to collect his dry-cleaning.”

Then, in another message to a friend a few minutes later, Sam wrote: “The tyrant is dying. He knows I am coming tonight but I am still coming.”

“I assume it was a voice in his head”, said his father.

Coroner Dr Shirley Radcliffe said: “He had a lot of support from all of his family. There hadn’t been any obvious issue of any sort. The only strange thing is this trip to Amsterdam and this use of a drug.

“It is possible that it changed him in some way. It may be that it caused some demons to be released to some extent.

“This doesn’t seem as if there was thought and planning, an intention. This feels sudden, impulsive, not thought through.

“Therefore I can’t return a verdict of suicide. It was clearly not an accident. He did jump but without understanding what was going through his head. I am going to return an open verdict.

“Here was a man with everything to live for and I would just like to offer my very deepest condolences.”