A very sad day today for us, saying goodbye with love to this great lad, Bradley.
One of the saddest yet most moving and uplifting tributes I’ve ever seen. This was a day that never should have happened - a uniquely talented little boy with his whole life ahead of him, who, following bullying at school, took his own life. I’ve been in awe of the way this whole community has united to pay their respects. And very touched that they made us feel so welcome to join them to pay our respects too. There are very big issues here - involving the way society deals with bullying, and with children with ADHD. The “Blow for Bradley” campaign will be tackling awareness of these issues and hopefully bringing about change. Bradley John’s tragically short but luminous life will change the world. His courageous Dad Byron will see to that. We are proud to support him.
Funeral procession today for young Bradley John. One of the saddest things I have ever seen. Yet this little boy’s short life and tragic death has already lit up the world - and gives hope for a better future, in many ways. The manner of his death highlights the huge problem of bullying in schools - this school, shockingly, seems to be denying that the bullying even existed. Similarly it makes us ask the question of whether schools are properly caring for children with ADHD - knowing that their abrupt change of mood can lead to tragedy. But this day of celebration was exceptional for another very significant reason.
This huge outpouring of love brought together folks from the whole spectrum of the hunting community, from traditionalist fox hunters to the bloodless Clean Boot hunts championed by Bradley and his amazing Dad Byron John, to purely social supporters and friends - and even to ‘anti’s ‘ - like Anne Brummer and myself. We all drank from the same cup of respect and love for this inspiring young lad.Flashback to happier times. Tuning Bradley’s guitar while his Dad, Hunt Master Byron looks on proudly.
I can hear some of you scratching your heads, wondering why we, campaigners against cruelty to wild animals, became close friends with Hunters. The answer is that in the hunting world of Bradley and his courageous Dad, there is no cruelty. All the ancient exhilaration of the chase, but no suffering - no death. In the Clean Boot Hunt the quarry is a man - and a pack of excited bloodhounds follows his scent - followed by a posse of equally excited human riders. At the end there are licks but no bites. Byron, brought up in a fox hunting community. Decided many years ago he would pursue this new course, the humane way of taking hunting forward into the 21st century. It took a lot of courage, since of course not all his colleagues felt the same way. He took a lot of abuse in the chin. Ironically he also suffered abuse from ‘antis’ who mistakenly thought he was hunting foxes. But Byron has held his course true, with his son Bradley by his side (and maxing daughter Danielle) who was already a proud and dedicated advocate of humane hunting.
Today Bradley’s spirit inspired us all to rise above our different perspective views and and unite in our appreciation. I have learned that progress is achieved not by conflict, but by the resolution of conflict. Today, young Bradley John brought us all closer to a humane and decent future.If you want to help Byron John find closure on the tragic loss of his son Bradley, and if you want to help him fight bullying, get recognition for the needs of children with ADHD, and make country sports humane by promoting Clean Boot Hunting - please visit our Save-Me website in the next couple of days. We will publish details of the new ‘BlowforBradley website, to be launched imminently. Bri