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Diana Churchill Ruled a Suicide

Oct. 24, 1963 - A coroner ruled today that Mrs. Diana Churchill (center in 1931), Sir Winston’s eldest daughter, committed suicide last Sunday with a “single, massive dose” of sleeping capsules. Mrs. Churchill, who was 54 years old, used her maiden name although she had been married twice. She was found dead on the floor at her London home. Professor Keith Simpson, a pathologist, said she had surely taken 17 sleeping capsules and might have taken more. Professor Simpson also said she had been drinking. The coroner, Gavin Thurston, also heard evidence from several witnesses about Mrs. Churchill’s voluntary work for the Samaritans, an organization that helps persons tempted to commit suicide. One witness said that Mrs. Churchill had held the view that suicide was never justifiable. The coroner said the normal dose of capsules was two and that it was impossible to see how a person of Mrs. Churchill’s intellect could have made a mistake about dosage. Lady Churchill, Sir Winston’s wife (right), who is 78, left Westminster Hospital yesterday after “a period of rest and investigation.” She was in the hospital when her daughter died.


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