A FATHER of two described as the “best dad you could wish for” died after stabbing himself in the heart at his Higham home, an inquest heard.

"Loving family man" William Daniels, known as Billy, was found collapsed in the garage by his daughter in the early hours of New Year’s Day.

Yesterday (Aug 7) the inquest into the 57-year-old’s death heard how he turned down an invitation to a New Year’s Eve party at the local Working Men’s Club because he was feeling unwell and stayed in.

His daughter Sabrina Daniels, her partner Paul and their three-year-old daughter Savanna headed out about 9pm and returned to the family home in Bull Lane at around 1.30am.

Detective Sergeant Kris Eberlein, of Tonbridge CID, told the inquest at Gravesend Town Hall: “They put Savannah into bed and went to check on Billy who they expected to find asleep on the sofa.

“They heard a knock on the door and it was their friend Deon Peters and noticed blood on the side of the stairs.

“Sabrina was worried about her father and she looked downstairs into the garage and shouted ‘he’s done it again’, thinking he had fallen asleep while drunk and saw Billy lying on his side.

“She returned upstairs and Paul entered the garage and saw Billy was on the floor. He asked him to get up and saw blood around Billy and dialled 999.”

As they tried to move Mr Daniels, Mr Peters and Miss Daniels’ partner noticed a knife sticking out of his chest, between his rib cage and stomach.

The pair tried to resuscitate him until paramedics arrived but he was pronounced dead at the scene.

A post-mortem examination found the cause of death was a haemorrhage as a consequence of a stab wound to the heart.

A police investigation found there were no suspicious circumstances surrounding Mr Daniels’ death.

The inquest heard how the grandfather had an alcohol problem and suffered from depression and tried to take his own life in Worcester Close, Greenhithe, in 2006.

The Greenwich-born taxi driver moved to the Canary Islands and Malta before returning to Kent to live with his daughter and her partner at the end of last year.

Det Sgt Eberlein said: “Paul was aware he (Mr Daniels) drank a bottle of vodka every day. He was always pleasant whilst drunk but seemed to be more down over the Christmas week.

“On January 31 he (Mr Daniels) apologised for the way he had been. He wanted to resolve his problem.”

On recording his verdict, north Kent Coroner Roger Hatch said: “It is clear he had previously intended to take his own life in 2006 and having heard the circumstances which led to his death on January 1 I am left with no alternative to record William Charles Daniels took his own life.”

He passed on his condolences to Mr Daniels’ family.

A family statement released to News Shopper read: “He was the best dad you could wish for.

"He was amazing, a loving father and family man. He will be missed by everyone.

“He had a sense of humour and this result does not give a true reflection of him. It’s not what he was like.”