Tom Jefferson really was the best of men and the worst of men. His untimely death on the 21st of May has broken our hearts and illuminated the truth of that sentence.
He was the best of men in the way he loved his two beautiful daughters and in the way he brought adventure, joy and a very big world into their lives. In the way he loved his partner of over 17 years, Juliet Lamont, a woman he respected as much as loved, his creative partner and travelling companion in all his adventures.
Driving home after a weekend away working for Greenpeace recently, Tom said, “sometimes the best part of the going away is getting home to the girls…those are the three people I want to always spend time with – they’re my home.”
He was the best of men in the way he generously welcomed the stranger, the out-of-towner, in the way his eye caught and his photography recorded the simple beauty of who we are. The exhilaration of action, the play of light, the stillness of the soul looking out through battered eyes. Tom’s photography revealed not just ourselves but his own humanity, love and hope.
He was truly the worst of men for the risks he took, for endlessly pushing the envelope, for taunting life, for squaring off to fate and challenging it to have a go, take a swing. What he may not have realised is that fate was as warmed and charmed by him as the rest of us.
Dear Tom, we will miss you until we all meet again. Until then, thank you for your photos, for your courage and laughter and for the grace to live life at full tilt.
Tom Jefferson, a passionate and strong environmental activist, and documentary maker, loved the Leard State Forest. You can take action to remember his legacy by contributing to the movement to protect it.