Shock death of Burnley man (41)

James O'Callaghan
James O'Callaghan
Share this article

A family have been left devastated after a loving son was found dead in his bed on New Year’s Day.

Forty-one-year-old James O’Callaghan was found unresponsive at home in Gannow by his mother Marilyn.

The former Ivy Bank High School pupil, who suffered from epilepsy and had recently been diagnosed with diabetes, had complained of feeling tired the night before.

A post-mortem examination has proved inconclusive and further tests are to be carried out.

His devastated sister, Mary Harrison, said: “James was a very loving and caring person.

“We are all in a complete state of shock and just want to know how he died. James loved to play with his nephews and nieces, and also enjoyed watching the television.

“On New Year’s Eve evening I asked James if he would like to come out to the pub with us, but he said he was too tired.

“My mum checked him in the morning but thought he was still asleep. When she checked again in the afternoon he was unresponsive.

“James was very close to our father Patrick and helped to care for him when he was dying of cancer.

“James was devastated when he died, and for the last few years has been suffering from depression. He was on medication for this and his other ailments, but we don’t know if this has contributed to his death.”

Mrs Harrison said her brother also attended the former Calder View School, Stoneyholme, and said he enjoyed playing on the computer and visiting the Gannow Wharf pub run by his other sister Catherine and partner Mick Rowley.

He also leaves an older brother Jack who lives in London.

James’ funeral was held on Friday at Burnley Crematorium. An inquest is expected to be held later in the year.