In Memoriam

jp smith 1975 2015 - Copy

22 November, 1975          18 July, 2015

“Beyond The Forest” was created in 2013 as a joint venture with Joshua Paul ‘JP’ Smith, a noted researcher and investigator in central Florida; it was his own suggestion that we, in our shared enthusiasm for the Elder Children, combine our efforts to document, analyse and report our findings.

For this, and for Josh’s friendship, I am truly grateful.

Josh, or ‘JP’ as he was known to some, was a dedicated, intelligent researcher, with much insight and instruction; I learned a great deal from him not only in our discussions but through his own work, which he presented via his self-produced series of videos, pod-casts, and other media.  His generosity and friendliness contributed immensely not only to the EC community at large, but to my own efforts as well.  Our conversations, and our questions, enabled us to begin to formulate protocols for analysis and review, in an objective, carefully critical format.

Since Josh and I launched “Beyond The Forest”, over one hundred Reports have been posted here, including many of the Daily Reports from the Cottage.  It was our hope to use the Cottage as a base of operations for the continued observation and study of the Elder Children, and to compare our findings with JP’s own work in central Florida and also in Oregon, where he lived briefly.  Sadly, this did not happen.

JP died suddenly, on Saturday, 18 July, 2015; his loss has been a shocking, devastating blow, keenly felt and deeply grieved.  He was a truly special person, whose interests encompassed many other fields and topics; his remnant work is a hallmark of investigation and reporting, and a standard for all enthusiasts and researchers.

JP was a true, cherished friend; he never failed to provide his assistance through all of my adventures, and was the first to provide his own, carefully considered feedback on my Reports.  Nor did we limit our conversations strictly to cryptids; we discussed many topics, many areas of interest.  We loved to read the Bible together, and discuss its meaning and application within our lives; we talked of poetry and art, painting and sculpture; we looked at history together, and our spiritual journeys.  We even took turns cooking together, discussing and sharing receipts and culinary treats, critiquing, complimenting, and consuming.  Because of his kindness, loyalty, and support, I have met many wonderful persons in the EC community, all of whom have told me, on many occasions, how much he meant to them, as well; it is a testament to his legacy and his life.

“Beyond The Forest” exists today, because of Josh; he was my trusted friend, my spiritual companion, my brother in all things.  In his memory, the “Beyond The Forest” logo has been redesigned, with a dark green, silhouetted Joshua Tree; its meaning, and symbolism, was important to us both.

To him, and to his legacy of learning and laughter, I now dedicate this blog, in deepest gratitude, appreciation, and love, to my Brother Joshua Paul ‘JP’ Smith.

I love you, Josh.


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