Heartache of family at ‘waste of young life’

Fashion student Nina Paunova, 20. Picture: Ross Parry Agency
Fashion student Nina Paunova, 20. Picture: Ross Parry Agency
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The family of a “beautiful and talented” fashion student who took her life after a break-up with her boyfriend have spoken of their heartache at the “waste of a young life which could have been prevented”.

A coroner gave a narrative verdict yesterday following an inquest into the death of 20-year-old Nina Paunova, following the break-down of her troubled relationship with Samuel Scott, who was seven years older.

In a statement her family said: “After learning the details of how she died we feel shocked and devastated by what she had been through in her final moments.

“We cannot even contemplate her emotional pain and distress which pushed this beautiful and active young woman to kill herself in a matter of hours.

“This was such a terrible waste of a young life which could have been prevented. Nina lived her life to the fullest and she will be remembered by many for her friendship and passion for fashion. She was a talented student, she was also working in her spare time and had a bright future in front of her.

“We lost our dear daughter and beloved sister. We love her and think about our memories together all the time. She is still alive in our hearts but our lives will never be the same without her.” The relationship between Miss Paunova, who lived with her mother and stepfather in Beverley, and was about to start her third year studying fashion at Manchester Metropolitan University, and Mr Scott was “rocky”, and in 2014 she had threatened to throw herself off a balcony when he threatened to end the relationship.

The relationship ended last April acrimoniously, but the pair got back together in June, contrary to the advice of her father Vesselin, a Professor of Chemistry at the University of Hull, who felt it was damaging her.

On the night of the tragedy, Mr Scott had received a screenshot of text messages from his best friend, whose girlfriend had been texting Miss Paunova, which suggested she was going to receive expensive presents for her 21st birthday and would then end her relationship with Mr Scott.

Mr Scott was angry, and “vituperative” texts followed. Prof Marks said: “He threatened to post it on social media sites which he knew would cause her distress.”

When she tried to see him just after midnight on September 8, he would not let her in. She was later found hanging in a field near Etton, having driven through the hedge at a speed of over 60mph.

Prof Marks found Miss Paunova had intended to kill herself, concluding: “The termination of her relationship that night had a causative effect on her subsequent actions that culminated in her death.”