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News > Lyonian News > Joshua Beresford-Smart

Joshua Beresford-Smart

Joshua Beresford-Smart (OL 2013-2020), a talented actor, joyful, charming and inspirational young man tragically passed away earlier this year. We publish here a tribute to him from Patrick Miles.
Joshua at School training to be a mentor
Joshua at School training to be a mentor

Patrick Miles (OL 2020), one of Josh's closest friends, writes:

"Josh played a hugely important part in all our John Lyon careers, he was a fearless and talented athlete, actor, singer, pupil and friend. He had a profound impact on all his teachers and pupils. I feel incredibly fortunate to have shared so many cheerful and wonderful memories with Josh and I wanted to share some with you.

"I was lucky enough to meet Josh at the beginning of Year 10 and looking back I am so grateful to have featured for a short time in what was his beautiful and colourful life. Josh and I started off by playing in the same football team; then sharing endless laughs in Mr. Jones’ drama lessons and even escaped a stampeding herd of cows on our DofE Bronze expedition. Josh was in his element the most when performing on stage. His talent and piercing voice had the ability to grip any audience. From a young age he played main roles in big school musicals and led by example. I had the privilege of sharing the stage with him on countless occasions and I can shamelessly say I was always trying to replicate or come close to his amazing flair. Josh taught me so much both on and off stage and the qualities he radiated affected every single person in our year. To me he became like a brother. His adversity, courage and resilience went above and beyond, and it showed when he would look to put a smile on other peoples’ faces, despite the pain he was going through. His charisma, laughter and above all his smile will live on forever. So, to my best friend and brother I say thank you and I will carry your smile with me forever.

"During our last years in the Sixth Form our drama class became similar to a brotherhood. Bringing him on stage during our last school musical was an honour and privilege to say the least. Even more touching was when we performed our very last A-Level performance. This marked the culmination of our Drama A-Level journey, a journey that we will all cherish for the rest of our lives. Our group performance, to use Mr Jones’ words was “the best A-Level performance he has ever directed”, but the sacrifices that Josh made during the hardest period of his treatment to be there for our rehearsals once again go to show the incredible man we were blessed with. We took a step back and watched his final monologue and for two minutes the entire room sat in complete awe and admiration for the incredible talent we were witnessing. Josh was a talented young man and even though we shared the stage with him on so many occasions we were always supporting actors to his tremendous life story. Thank you, Josh. We will forever miss you.

"Extract from Winnie the Pooh – A. A. Milne

If ever there is tomorrow when we’re not together …

there is something you must always remember.

You are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.

But the most important thing is, even if we’re apart …

I’ll always be with you."



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