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Tributes to Runcorn student who died 'chasing his dream'
POIGNANT tributes have been paid to a Runcorn student who plunged to his death from an Australian waterfall while ‘chasing his dreams’.
Josh Furber, aged 20, was walking with friends at a World Heritage site near Sydney on Sunday, when he lost his footing and fell 300ft over the edge of Wentworth Falls.
Weeks before the tragic accident, the former Heath pupil posted on Facebook: ‘This is the best experience of my life and I can honestly say I am living out my dreams’.
He tweeted: ‘Australia well and truly has my heart and soul’, describing his new friends as his ‘Australian family’.
Josh, a construction student at Leeds University, was four months into a year long adventure, working as a barman at a Bondi Beach.
Acting Inspector Ian Colless, co-ordinator of the police rescue squad said: “It’s a waterfall area, so it’s slippery and muddy, it’s very unstable.”
Wentworth Falls, a three-tiered waterfall, is one of the most picturesque beauty spots in the Blue Mountains.
His sister, Beth posted on Facebook: ‘My bestest friend and brother, things won’t ever be the same. We are heartbroken and we won’t ever get over this. Devastated and heartbroken. I love you.’ His mum, Jayne, who works for Riverside housing, said: “Josh has been taken away from us in a tragic accident whilst travelling in Australia.
“We are devastated, though we know he was having a great time, with good friends in a beautiful part of the world.
“We now need time to be on our own as a family, to support each other and cherish our proud memories of a wonderful son and brother.”
His parents, Jayne and Mark are understood to be travelling to Australia.
His sisters, Danielle and Beth are devastated.
University friend, Myles McKeever added: ‘He was an inspiration, mate, did what most people in Runcorn can only dream about’.
Family friend Maria Ellis posted: ‘Words can’t explain how much we are all missing you back home. You was such an amazing lad with big ambitions and had so much more to achieve.
‘Everyone who knew you known how much of a nice lad you were, nobody could of had anything bad to say about you’.
James Steady said: ‘Proper great memories that I’ll never forget. Missing you so much bro, RIP.’ Danielle Law posted: ‘Can’t get my head round it at all. Love you always. Brightest star up there now. Sleep tight’.
Chelsea Cullen posted: ‘Still shocked. Can’t believe it. RIP. Thinking of you and your family’.
Heather Mullaney, head teacher of The Heath School, said: “Josh Furber was an excellent student, happy and easy going.
“He was very popular with his peers and with staff and had an excellent sense of humour, sense of fun and relentless energy.
“Josh was outgoing and had a delightful smile. He was a very loyal friend.
“He was a genuine pleasure to teach and he would do whatever it took to be successful in his studies, giving 100 per cent to everything and was gifted academically, especially in English, maths, science and sport.
“He loved football and boxing. Josh was competitive and loved to challenge himself to do his best in all subjects and sporting events.
“At GCSE results day, he was delighted he achieved such excellent grades.”
Leave your tributes to Josh below or on our Facebook page at facebook.com/runcornwidnesworld