Tim Patterson said Wednesday he wasn't shocked to learn his wife had committed suicide the day before.
Fighting lifelong depression and a battle with alcohol, Barbara Sue Patterson had repeatedly tried to kill herself over the years, he told the Knoxville News Sentinel.
Those attempts, he said, were mostly halfhearted - "just far enough to let somebody know she was screaming for help. She was just hurting inside."
What baffled him was the way his 46-year-old wife decided to die, Patterson said.
She smoked a last cigarette, put her 2004 Cadillac CTS in gear and calmly drove it off a steep embankment into Melton Hill Lake Tuesday afternoon.
She then repeatedly spurned efforts of help from horrified onlookers and would-be rescuers and rocked back and forth in the driver's seat, coaxing the car to submerge.
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