A young British man named Harry Gregg, aged 25, took his life after struggling with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) stemming from his time fighting in Ukraine.

Inspired by comments made by then-Foreign Secretary Liz Truss, Gregg, a Thetford, Norfolk native with minimal military background apart from his time in the Army Cadets, joined the conflict in Ukraine. In the wake of the Russian invasion in February 2022, Truss’s statement suggested support for individuals willing to aid Ukraine’s fight for freedom, despite criticisms and legal warnings against such actions from her political peers and official government advisories.

Upon his return to the UK, Gregg’s mental health deteriorated significantly, a situation his mother, Sandi Gregg, described as “very rough.” Despite seeking medical advice, Gregg missed appointments with mental health specialists and never indicated his suicidal intentions.

On December 14th, Gregg had made plans with his friends to go out go-karting and clubbing to celebrate his 25th birthday. He never showed. Concerned for his welfare, his friends had asked authorities to perform a welfare check. He was found deceased in his home, having died by hanging, under circumstances that led to a narrative verdict from the Norfolk Area Coroner, noting the uncertainty of his intent and the potential influence of substance use.

Gregg was described as having a somewhat dark and self deprecating sense of humor.

Gregg had ventured to Ukraine on three occasions, motivated by a desire to “give back to society” and contribute to the Ukrainian cause despite his limited military experience. His journey to Ukraine included various challenges, such as missing a bus to the border and having to hitchhike part of the way. During his service, he experienced the harsh realities of war, including trench warfare and the loss of comrades, which deeply affected him.

The narrative shared by his family highlights Gregg’s initial enthusiasm for helping Ukraine, later tempered by the traumatic experiences he encountered, which ultimately contributed to his struggle with PTSD upon his return. Despite his tragic end, his family remembers him fondly as a lively and loving individual whose sense of humor and caring nature left a lasting impact on those around him.

Gregg’s story underscores the complex implications of civilians participating in foreign conflicts, the profound effects of war on mental health, and the challenges of accessing adequate support for PTSD regardless of nation.