A HAMPSHIRE man missing for five months was found hanging in marshland by a group of children, an inquest heard.

Phillip McCormack was discovered at land behind Lymington Hospital after disappearing last year, Winchester Coroner’s Court heard.

A search operation was launched by police to find the 29-year-old from Lymington, who was last seen at his home in Ambrose Corner on November 17.

At the time of his disappearance, his distraught mum Karola made an emotional plea to her son to get in touch, saying he had disappeared the day after they had watched two episodes of the TV series Missing.

His body was later found on April 11.

The inquest heard that Mr McCormack had been diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome as well as anxiety and depression.

He had previously worked as a night porter at the Forest Park Hotel in Brockenhurst but was not working at the time of his disappearance due to breaking his shoulder in a motorbike accident.

He had signed up to an electrician training course in Cardiff due to last around six months.

In a statement read in court, David Lewis of Compass Counselling said that Mr McCormack had said he felt low in the days leading up to his disappearance and had agreed he would meet with his GP, but at a session on November 15, Mr McCormack told Mr Lewis he had not done so.

Mrs McCormack said: “He could be fine but he could be quite a difficult person to get on with.

“He lost his father when he was 16, he said it didn’t affect him which I found really odd but now knowing about his condition, it’s hard for him to empathise.”

Speaking about the electrician course Mr McCormack was due to start, she said: “He seemed like he was looking forward to it.

“He seemed to be coping quite well, I don’t know what went wrong. “I cannot understand why he did it. I know in the days in the lead-up to him going missing he was very secretive but he could be like that.”

She added that he had around £1,000 in credit card debt, but that, “it was not as if he had no one and he was all on his own.”

Christopher McCormack, Phillip’s brother, said he was struggling with being out of work.

“He went on long walks and he would come back quite late at night. That was out of character I felt. He distanced himself from friends,” he said.

Investigating officer Keely Osborne told the inquest that the area where Mr McCormack was discovered had previously been searched by police but that the marshland was huge in size with boggy terrain and thick woodland.

Coroner Grahame Short said it was possible Mr McCormack taking his own life was related to worry about going away to Cardiff, but that the reasons behind the death were “a matter of speculation.”

He recorded a conclusion of suicide.