Jonathan Joyce is the co-founder and director of web company, Storm ID, as well as a ‘wild swimming’ enthusiast. Despite being described as super fit by his family and colleagues, the 41-year-old still drowned after he got into trouble in the English Channel. He was pronounced dead on Saturday after being airlifted to hospital. It was a canoeist who took him to shore after spotting him unconscious in the water at Beesands beach.

Jonathan was also a member of the Outdoor Swimming Society, which promotes swimming in open waters such as lakes, seas and rivers. Before setting up Storm ID in 2001, the Edinburgh University graduate was working in the city. His parents paid tribute to him by stating that he had ‘many reasons to be proud’. “Storm ID had been established for a few years and they hosted a party on the beach. Jonathan had looked out and seen about 100 people – mothers, fathers, children, young people and their partners – all having fun together in the knowledge that they had a secure future. He was proud he had been able to help create that. Jonathan lived for 41 years and died knowing that he was loved and admired for every single moment by his parents,” they added.

His colleagues also paid tribute to him via Storm ID’s website. They wrote: “His passing has come as a huge shock to all of us at Storm ID and he will be sorely missed. We have lost not only a wonderful and passionate colleague but a dear friend. The only comfort we can take is that our lives have been greatly enriched by the privilege of knowing him and for having done some incredible work with an extremely gifted and remarkable individual.”

Aside from being a prominent member of the Outdoor Swimming Society, Jonathan even create a ‘wild swim map’ to assist other enthusiasts who shared the same interest. “Jonathan is the missing link with our aquatic ape ancestors. Throwing himself into any water deeper than a puddle he spends all his free time looking for new places to swim, in and around Devon,” stated the society’s website. For the full story, you can refer over here.

As Happy Fish Swim School has mentioned many times before, drowning can occur to anyone at anytime regardless of how fit or how good of a swimmer one may be. Furthermore, open waters are unpredictable and things can change within just a couple of seconds. Even if you have taken swimming lessons, it does not mean that you will be able to overcome the open waters with ease.