'It destroys families': Sister of mother-of-two, 41, who died from alcohol addiction

The family of a mother-of-two who collapsed and died last week are hoping that they can help others battling alcohol addiction.

Tracy Guy, 41, died suddenly last week at her Omagh home. The cause of her death was recorded as alcohol poisoning/liver disease.

Ms Guy was a mother-of-two and leaves behind her 11-year-old daughter and one-year-old son.

Her sister Glenda Donald has said that those in need of help and their families should not be ashamed of asking for help.

"There just seems to be such shame," Ms Donald told The Irish News.

I think she (Tracy) was just proud. She didn't want people to know that she drank. Families don't want to admit they have a drinker in the family.

"Go and seek help and talk to your family - people want to help, don't be embarrassed by it."

Ms Donald said that in her more than 20-year battle with alcohol addiction, Ms Guy never admitted that she had a problem.

She said that her family learned of Ms Guy's issues with alcohol "more through friends".

According to Ms Donald, her sister was "an addict from her first drink".

Before she began drinking, Ms Donald remembers her as someone who was happy and had "the potential to do anything she wanted".

However, as she battled her addiction, Ms Guy became withdrawn from her loved ones and was left numb and "totally zapped" of all life.

I miss her. You always think there's time. I always thought she would be the one to say she needed the help but it didn't happen. It destroys families. It just pulls everyone apart.

She said that there was no warning of Ms Guy's death as she had not been hospitalised and "had no issues at all".

Glenda, her brother David and a friend are preparing to run the Belfast Marathon in May to raise funds for Ramona House, a rehabilitation and treatment service in Omagh.

"We want something positive to come of this nightmare and hopefully something her children can be proud of and I suppose if somebody else reads this and takes the chance that Tracy didn't, makes them think 'I need help' and go for the help, her death won't have been totally in vain."

If you have been affected by issues raised in this article, you can call the HSE Drugs and Alcohol helpline on 1800 459 459 or visit drugs.ie or askaboutalcohol.ie.

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