Father of BBC Radio 6 producer who took her own life launches charity

Father of BBC Radio 6 Music producer, 40, who was killed by a train after battling mental health problems launches charity to help people with anxiety and depression

  • BBC Radio presenter and producer Kelly Jobanputra took her own life in 2019
  • Her father, John Stooke, has set up a mental health charity in her memory  
  • For help, call Samaritans for free on 116 123 or visit www.samaritans.org 

The father of a BBC Radio 6 Music producer who was killed by a train after battling mental health problems has launched a charity to help people with depression and anxiety. 

Mother-of-two Kelly Jobanputra, who was a presenter on BBC Radio Wiltshire for 11 years before moving to become a producer at BBC Radio 6 Music in London , died in 2019. 

A coroner ruled that she took her own life after struggling with mental health problems. 

Her father John Stooke contested the verdict, saying that the suicide finding was ‘too simplistic’. 

Journalist Kelly Stooke took her own life in 2019 following a long battle with mental health

Mrs Jobanputra, who died at the age of 40, is pictured with husband Vikesh Jobanputra

He has how set up the Kelly Foundation in her memory the Pinetrees Centre in Swindon, Wiltshire. Mr Stooke said: ‘The charity has been set up in memory of Kelly to support individuals with severe anxiety, depression, and other mental health issues where just antidepressant prescriptions are not the complete answer. 

‘Everyone should live a healthy, safe, fulfilling and independent life, supported by thriving and connected communities. 

‘She had terrible issues with her mental health. What you saw with Kelly wasn’t always what was actually going on with her as she put a façade on. 

‘She managed to live her life relatively successfully to the people of the outside world but her family knew what a struggle it was for her everyday just to seem normal.’

Father John Stooke, 76, has set up The Kelly Foundation to help others struggling with mental health issues including anxiety and depression

The death is the second tragedy the family has had to endure after the presenter’s (right) brother Corrie Stooke (left) died of an accidental drugs overdose in 2004 aged 31

Mr Stooke also lost his son Corrie Stooke to to a drug overdose following a battle with his own mental health, making the charity extremely close to his heart as he aims to combat mental health issues in the Wiltshire town.

‘My son died when he was 31, having suffered from undiagnosed acute anxiety,’ he said.

‘Kelly never really got over her brother’s death and this added to her problems.

‘My desire is to help other people struggling with this as Kelly would have wanted that.

‘If you talk to any parent who has lost a child, they will always say that the most important thing is that their loss was not in vain and that their lives are not forgotten.

‘So I wanted to make this for Kelly too to make sure her children grow up knowing that she was a great person.’

To help mark the creation of the new charity, The Kelly Foundation will be hosting a fundraising ball next month.

The event will take place at the Deanery Theatre in Wichelstowe on Sunday, February 5, and will include live music and entertainment.

Vocalist Adam Okin will be attending on the day and so will the all-girl band The Swing Birds, with vocals by Kym Rose and Lauren Landi, which will run from 3:30pm to 5:30pm.

If you are interested in attending or would like to learn more about The Kelly Foundation visit www.4kelly.org. 

For help, call Samaritans for free on 116 123 or visit www.samaritans.org 

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