After getting into a heated argument about her husband's 16-hour shift work schedule, mother-of-three Ashley Murrell banished her husband Mikey to sleep on the couch the night of May 16. The following morning, Murrell found him dead.
The 33-year-old woman later found out that her late spouse, who worked as a carpet cleaner, was working longer hours than normal in order to take his wife to Prague for their anniversary. However, that trip would never happen as Mikey died in his sleep the night that Ashley made him sleep on the sofa.
Ashley Murrell said that the autopsy revealed that Mikey choked in his sleep. However, the cause was ruled "inconclusive."
Mrs. Murrell, who lives in England, said of her late husband: "Mikey was so caring, if he walked into a room and saw someone unhappy he would be the first person there trying to cheer them up. He absolutely loved his family. He wanted his kids to have all the things in life that he didn't and he worked so hard to make that happen."
She continued by saying: "He would work 16-hour shifts, seven days a week just so he could save up enough to take us all to Disney every year. He was so worn out but he would do anything just to see us smile. But the hours he was working were just getting too much. He was so exhausted all the time and he was running himself into the ground and his health was going downhill fast."
Murrell also opened up about the last moments she spent with her late husband.
"When he came home that night he was a mess, I have never seen him so exhausted," she said while talking with Sun Online. "I couldn't stand seeing him like that and I got angry. I was sick of it. I had a go at him and told him to sleep on the sofa which was stupid because I really just wanted him around more."
The following morning, Ashley was immediately aware that "something was wrong."
"When I came out of the bedroom and saw him the next morning I knew something was wrong straight away," she said. "He was lying exactly where I left him and his face was all discolored - he looked gray. I walked over and touched him but he was cold and I jumped back and ran out of the room. I started screaming 'your dad's dead,' to my 14-year-old and ran into the street screaming 'Mikey's dead.'"
"I blacked out and had to be carried back into the house by neighbors. It felt so surreal, I couldn't process it. I didn't feel like he was dead, I felt like he had left me. When the ambulance came and they confirmed he was dead I collapsed onto the floor and I was sick. Nothing made sense."
Because their final night was spent in angry, Ashley says the tragic incident has changed her "perspective on life."
"I felt so guilty. I was so angry with myself for making him sleep on the sofa. I still find it so hard to think that my last words to him were out of anger. When I found out he'd been saving to take us on an anniversary holiday it was awful - heartbreaking doesn't begin to cover it. Losing Mikey has changed my entire perspective on life. Life is too short to go to bed angry and not to spend every moment you can with your family."