HEARTFELT tributes have been paid to a young Pershore man who died suddenly in the early hours of Monday morning.

Nathan John was described as someone who had found his calling in life and was exactly where he wanted to be when he died.

His family said they were proud of the 21-year-old who was training to be a Baptist minister.

Jacqui and Steve John, Nathan's parents, said they had not realised how many lives their son had touched during his own short life.

"We hadn't realised the depth and breadth of the relationships he had and the influence he has had on people," they said.

"All we can say is that we are immensely proud of him. He was training to be a Baptist minister. He was where he wanted to be and it is a miracle that he made it there.

"He has climbed many mountains physically and metaphorically. He is an inspiration to all those people who have trouble in their life but don't let that define them."

The former Pershore High School pupil was studying for a BA in Theology at Spurgeon's Bible College in South Norwood Hill, London when he tragically died.
He was found in his bed on Monday morning after suffering a possible seizure at about 5.30am.

Reverend Mark Jennings, minister at Pershore Baptist Church, where Nathan and his family were members, said he would leave a lasting legacy.

"He had a real passion for God and a love for people" said Revd Jennings, who baptised Nathan six years ago. "He was regularly preaching in churches, he was really engaging with God and pursuing a passion.

"He had Skyped family members in America just before midnight and said he would sleep pretty well, which is poignant.

"He served as an apprentice at the YMCA in Pershore, was a volunteer at Croome Court, he was involved in our after school club and holiday club, the kids loved him, and he was in the Pershore Operatic and Dramatic Society.

"He was an incredible young man in so many ways, with courage in the face of ill health that he didn't limit him. He didn't see barriers he saw opportunities and he seized them with both arms.

"He left a big impression on the lives of many people."
Nathan's former headteacher Clive Corbett also paid tribute to a great student.

"Nathan was a model student, he was hugely involved in a great deal while he was at school between 2004 and 2010," said Mr Corbett.

"One of his biggest achievements at school was being involved in the establishment of the Interact Group, which connected with the town's Rotary Club. He was its chairman. The group co-ordinates all our charitable activities at the school. He was involved in a huge amount of good work and excelled academically.

"He will be missed by all at the school and our thoughts are with his family and his brother Oliver, who is in our sixth form."

The Revd Dr Roger Standing, principal of Spurgeon's College, added: "In his time with us at Spurgeon’s Nathan had become a valued and much loved member of our community, fully involved in a variety of ways from playing drums in chapel to preaching in local churches. 

"His loss is sharply felt by both students and staff."

Many of Nathan’s friends took to social media sites to leave their condolences.

A thanksgiving service will be held on Monday, April 14, at 11.30 in Pershore Abbey.