Parents of river victim Wayne Hughes pay tribute to their ‘cheeky’ son

Wayne Hughes, inset, whose body was found near Ranelagh Road

Wayne Hughes, inset, whose body was found near Ranelagh Road - Credit: Archant

The parents of a father-of-one whose body was discovered beside the River Orwell near Ipswich railway station have paid tribute to their ‘cheeky’ son.

The body of Wayne Hughes, 33, from Cox Lane, Ipswich, was found at the riverbank by Pooley’s yard in Ranelagh Road at around 7am on Wednesday.

His mum and dad Jayne and John Hughes say Wayne, who had a four-month-old baby son, could not swim and had called them in the early hours of Wednesday in a confused state.

They are now awaiting the results of a post-mortem examination to find out exactly how he died.

Mrs Hughes, who is caretaker at Christ Church in Ipswich, said: “It is not certain if he had a fit or slipped into the water. He had suffered from fits as a child and we think they were returning.

“He was cheeky – he had a real sense of humour.

“He used to like hanging around with his mates, he had a lot of mates.

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“He phoned me at 2.45am on Wednesday morning saying he didn’t know where he was. I rang him back 10 minutes later and his phone has been dead ever since.

“Police came round at 9.30am that morning but we already knew.”

Mrs Hughes said her son used to help out around the church, lifting furniture and replacing light bulbs.

“He was 6ft 4ins – he was a big, tall lad,” said Mr Hughes.

His parents say Wayne had been suffering from depression and had said to them over the years he didn’t think he would make it past his thirties, but they don’t think he would have taken his own life.

Wayne, who had a 35-year-old

sister, Stacey, moved to Suffolk from Old Whittington in Derbyshire with his family in 2001 when he was 18, having been born and raised in Ashby-de-la-Zouch, Leicestershire.

Although unemployed at the time of his death, Mr Hughes had previously worked in Poundland and Tescos in Ipswich having originally trained as a painter and decorator.

A police spokeswoman said they were not treating his death as suspicious.

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