FORMER Irvine Meadow player Aaron Connolly recalled the terrifying moment when he decided he had to end his life.

However he dramatically brought himself back from the brink right at the last minute.

Now he is looking to help others in a similar situation through football and friendship.

Former Ayr United player Aaron, 28, was reported missing for 19 hours last April after failing to turn up for a game against Beith Juniors.

He recalled: “I had been suffering from very low moods and depression and decided the answer was to complete suicide so sent a message to my wife to say goodbye.

“I thought could hear the voice of my son Ruairi and I stopped.

“I realised the only way I could stay safe was to stay in public so I boarded a bus which would go as far as possible and I ended up travelling to Aberdeen.

“I had been reported missing and my wife, Siobhan was really worried about me. I travelled back to Buchanan Street bus station in Glasgow and was apprehended by police and taken to Leverndale Hospital.

“I then spent four weeks there getting treatment and talking things through. My family were so supportive and so was everyone at Irvine Meadow, including the manager Brian McGinty, who talked to me a lot.

“They knew something wasn’t right when I had been missing some training sessions.

“The message I would have for people is that there is always a better way than suicide.”

Aaron, who has since moved on to join Fauldhouse FC as they are closer his work in Edinburgh, has now teamed up with his wife to form a support organisation for people in a similar boat. This give them an opportunity to be heard.

He said: “We set up a group called Time to Tackle, which give people who play football the opportunity to enjoy being involved in a game for an hour.

“Then after that they have an opportunity to talk things through with people who will understand them. It’s important that issues like this are brought out into the open and it helps people if they have someone to chat to.”