‘Don’t suffer in silence’, pleads grieving mum

Lucas Holness with his two nieces, Phoebe and Georgie.
Lucas Holness with his two nieces, Phoebe and Georgie.
  • Sixteen-year-old Alford pupil sadly took his own life
  • Devastated mum: ‘You don’t have to suffer in silence’
  • School and fellow pupils pay tribute to ‘popular young man’

The devastated mother of a teenage boy from Alford, who took his own life earlier this month, has urged young people with mental health issues not to suffer in silence.

Lucas Holness, 16, tragically passed away on May 2, having suffered with mental health issues ‘for some time’, according to his family.

His parents, Michelle and Andrew, paid tribute to their ‘popular and fun loving’ son and told the Leader that, outside of his own family, nobody would have known that Lucas was suffering with mental ill-health.

Michelle said: “Lucas was an extremely popular chap, having a very large circle of friends. He was very well known.

“Nobody would be able to tell he was suffering from mental health except for me, his close family and himself.

“I believe he was trapped in his own mind and was in a very dark place not able to express his feelings or what was going on in his head.

“I intend to campaign for Mind, the mental health charity, and raise funds for them in the future.

“I believe that young people often aren’t heard when it comes to mental health, and teenagers - especially boys - need to be more aware of the help that is available.

“You don’t have to suffer in silence. Just reach out and don’t be scared.”

Michelle told the Leader that Lucas loved his family dearly, including his sisters Josephine and Jessica, and his nieces Phoebe and Georgie (pictured above).

He was a Year 11 pupil at Queen Elizabeth’s Grammar, Alford, and he had previously been involved in the Alford Boys’ Brigade, Louth Air Cadets, and Models 4U. He also used to play the trumpet in the Alford Silver Band.

At the weekend, almost all Year 11 pupils from QEGS Alford met in a playing field near the town, where Lucas used to socialise, and released dozens of balloons in his memory.

The school’s head teacher, Angie Francis, said: “This has been an incredibly difficult time for us, as a close school community, coming to terms with the tragic death of Lucas.

“I have been proud of how Year 11, his friends and staff have pulled together, comforted one another and looked out for each other.

“Lucas was a popular young man with many good friends. At school he was usually happy and had a good sense of humour.

“Sadly, however, he had struggled with mental health issues for some time. Our thoughts are with his family.”

• If you are suffering with mental health issues, contact Samaritans on 116 123 (available 24/7).

If there is immediate danger or risk to life, call the emergency services on 999.