Thanks for taking the time to visit my JustGiving page.
26th June 2015 38 people were murdered in the Tunisia Terrorist Attacks, 3 people sadly from the same family.
That was Joel Richards along with his Uncle and Granddad. They were killed on the first day of what should have been a family holiday.
I knew Joel was on holiday there and when I heard about the shootings I messaged him to see if he was OK - You never think these things are going to affect you!
How wrong was I?
I met Joel whilst studying at University of Worcester and he became a wonderful friend who I'll always remember.
I was absolutely horrified and to this day still feel like Joel was cheated out of his wonderful future which I know he would have had.
He was my dance and gymnastics partner where we managed to get A’s for our performances (I’ll never understand why with Joel’s questionable rhythm, but no one could knock his efforts and determination).
Joel had an infectious smile and personality, he would have my in hysterics every lecture and we had the best times at University. An example being in a gymnastics lesson where I was stood on Joel’s shoulders holding onto the high ropes, Joel thought it would be hilarious to move, leaving me hanging at the top of the ropes; he just stood looking up laughing at me.
Joel wanted to become a school teacher, an ambition that I have managed to pursue and I know Joel would have been excellent too, inspiring children and passing on his enthusiasm and love of life.
As well as a school teacher, I'm also a instructor for Young Gloves Karate.
Over the past 10 years together with my dad Sensei Justin Thomas our club have managed to raise over £65,000 for local charities by conducting various events including; competitions, physical challenges, character dress-ups, donating hair, awards evenings, discos, helping Santa and many more.
2020, with your help we aim to raise our biggest amount to date!
Our target is £5,000-£10,000 for Smile for Joel, honoring and remember all those that didn’t come home on that tragic day and helping others to deal with the loss of family members through murder.
I want Joel’s smile to continue and live on in all of us. I know that Joel will be smiling on us all now, looking at what we are all achieving because, Together We Achieve More.