There is no doubt that Gary Speed had the admiration and respect of many within the footballing world, but the media has come a little too close to glorifying his suicide. It is hard to imagine what was going through his mind when he decided it was best that he hang himself, but of course, the Internet gossip has already provided some unfounded reasons for such an awful action.
Suicide used to be considered a taboo subject, not mentioned in polite company, but the danger now is that when someone well-known dies by their own hand, it is often presented as if it was an act of great courage and sacrifice. For the grieving family left behind it is nothing of the sort, just a lifetime of pain, unanswered questions and if onlys...
It would be a bad thing if someone contemplating suicide, felt encouraged by the publicity surrounding the death of Gary Speed and thought that they too would be glorified by family and friends. The truth is it is a sad act of desperation. Gary Speed's obituaries read like Roy of the Rovers, yet dark things were happening in his life. It is right his contribution to the world of football is acknowledged, but we should not present his suicide as the natural action of a hero.
For someone in despair, Gary Speed is not a good role model.