It is with an extremely heavy heart that we share the sad news that our President, John Mytton, passed away peacefully yesterday evening (27th June 2016). Just four weeks ago, we held an evening where we celebrated everything he had done over the past 60+ years for Evesham Table Tennis. It was attended by around 80 players, current and former.
Luke Moffat introduced the evening and said a few words about John. 'John is the reason that all of us are able to stand here tonight, united, honouring his achievements'
Lynda Reid was next to take stage where she talked about all of many successes that John had had over the past six decades.
Ken Baker was then invited to give a few words on John Mytton and spoke about how John was always so friendly, kind and had time for everyone.
John McKay kindly read out some words from St. Egwins school, where John had coached for many years. He also read out a short piece from Nigel Anson, a coach who has known John for many years.
Attention was then brought back to Luke, who after reading two statements from Mike Prior and Keith Ferguson, invited the chairman of the Wallace House to say some words. He thanked John for his recent donation to renovate the lighting in the sports hall. The hall was renamed the Mytton Sports Hall and a plaque was unveiled honouring this generous donation.
Lastly, Luke Moffat closed proceeding by saying some final words and announcing that the JLM Table Tennis Academy had been set up in celebration of everything that John has done for Evesham. Whilst John Mytton was too unwell to attend, he wrote some words that he wanted to be read out and that honour was bestowed upon Nick Mytton, his eldest son. Mandy Sylvester also gave thanks to everyone for attending and to Luke Moffat for organising such a successful evening.
Thank you for everyone who attended. Some of the statements can be found below, and videos will be appearing on YouTube over the coming months.
Keith Ferguson: “When I first started playing in the Evesham League, I only encountered John a few times when playing against him. Two years ago, however, I was prevailed upon by LM to join John‘s team in Division 2 and during this period I have come to appreciate just how much he has done for the League and how much the League means to him – and, indeed, how much he means to the League. Playing with him, in doubles, was great fun and we took great delight in showing that an age difference of at least 100 years (and on one occasion over 130 years) over our opponents was no barrier to success! Enjoy your evening John – a much-deserved tribute.”
Mike Prior: ''Although I never knew John at the height of his playing days, In the near 20 years that I have known John he has been an inspiration. I’ve always admired his playing which belied his age and he was quick to involve me with his coaching both at Wallace House and at Simon D.
He encouraged me with the developments at Evesham, initially with getting teams involved in the NJL and subsequently in the NCL, taking youngsters to Ledbury and Rugby and Wood Green, and of course with the setting up of EHS with the Friday night league and subsequently with St. Egwins. It was John’s encouragement and support that led to those developments which then saw Evesham dominate the County scene at Cadet, junior and subsequently senior levels both male and female; Some achievement for a small town. John can be very proud of his immense involvement throughout his long table tennis career at Evesham. No doubt he can still remember assembling all those rollaway tables at each school that we did together. ''
Dot MacFarlane: ''It will be an honour next Wednesday, to celebrate John's many many years of dedication to Evesham table tennis. It was John and Peggy who were mine and Malcolm's introduction to the Evesham league and we enjoyed many years of hospitality playing at their home and I also enjoyed trips in Emu (their VW van) to Cotswold Ladies league matches. It is without doubt that John is and has been an inspiration to MANY.''
Stuart Taylor, St. Egwins: ''John has a very special place in our hearts at St Egwin's middle school where he, along with Mike Prior, was very much responsible for acquiring the excellent equipment that is still used by the whole community. I remember well the long weekends that John spent assembling the 10 tables in our sports hall and how he came along every Tuesday for a couple of years, to offer his coaching skills to our pupils.
Because of his dedication, many of our pupils now enjoy a competitive, fulfilling sporting life within the local table tennis leagues. We would all like to express our thanks and best wishes to him.''
Tees Sport ''We at Tees Sport would like to give John our warmest regards and thanks for all his efforts during the many years he’s worked with us. He and his wife Peggy have always been such nice people to deal with and their dedication to table tennis and their loyalty to our company have always been greatly appreciated and will certainly be remembered. Thank you for all your support John''
As a final few words, I would like to add my memories of John. I first encountered John Mytton around 16 years ago. I was a nervous ten year old attending the school Table Tennis club for the first time at my local school. From the very first moment, John encouraged me, coached me, supported me, and was always there for me. It is certain that without his loyalty and encouragement, I would not have been as successful as I became in my 'prime years' and many of achievements at both local and county level would certainly have been unfulfilled ambitions.
Approximately one year ago, shortly after first hearing of John's diagnosis, he invited me to his house. He informed me that he wanted to give me all of his tables, barriers, nets and would like me to take over the Wallace House Club. Whilst extremely honoured, I wasn't sure whether I would ever be able to live up to such a legacy. I hesitantly accepted. Over the year, despite his on-going battle, he was always there for me and I began to know him in a completely different light.
Four weeks ago, I undertook the responsibility of organising an evening where our community was able to get together and celebrate all of his many accomplishments and achievements whilst John was still with us. I dedicated my time to phoning, e-mailing and messaging both current and former faces of our community. I spoke to him for the very last time just eight days ago where he personally thanked me for everything I had done. I hope that at that time, he felt that everything he has worked so hard to build up at over the past thirty years at Wallace House is in safe hands and that I intend to do everything I can to insure that it strives over the next thirty. He was not only my table tennis coach but he was my mentor and a close friend.
John was always positive, smiling and happy despite everything he was going through. You will be remembered very fondly, John and missed by many. Thank you for the positive impact that you've had and will continue to have on my life. I will be spending many moments thinking of your continued legacy. Good-bye old Friend
Written by Luke Moffat, 28th June.