John Hicks, passed away on 27th February 2015. John had been recovering from a Cancer Operation, but was rushed to hospital and died hours later with Jo at his side. His blog last month highlighed a news clipping from 1989, one of the many things john has done over the last 30 years for animal welfare. There is a folder at The Tree House full of clippings of news worthy acts when John has stood up for animal rights, many times putting himself in harms way to protect them.
Along with his wife Jo, they have continued to do all they can for animal welfare and when I came to know about John passing away, my first thought was for Nora, a bonnet macaque who adored John. Explaining to friends although difficult, you can make them understand. But there is no way for us to tell Nora that her best friend in this world has gone. John has spent the last years of his life in Goa, firstly with International Animal Rescue Goa and finally starting a secondary organisation called The Primate Trust. John always seemed to have a special connection with the monkeys and found it easy to work with them. Jo his wife is continuing the work, where they currently help over 40 monkeys.
Below are a collection of messages from Facebook showing support
Mission Rabies We are shocked and saddened to hear of the sudden death of John Hicks - a huge champion of animal welfare in Goa and an ardent supporter of our work there. We will always remember his friendship and kindness, as well as his tireless work to better the treatment of all animals.
Ronnie Lee So sorry to hear about the death of John Hicks, whom I knew as a tireless activist for animal liberation in the 70s and early 80s and who never ceased working to protect animals from abuse and persecution.
East Sussex WRAS John Hicks, founder of International Animal Rescue, sadly passed away this morning. An amazing man and a person WRAS is truely glad to have met and known.
Sonya Ghosh Rest in Peace John Hicks. At a loss for words...
I Love Goa Dogs Rest in Peace John. We are sorry to learn of John's death and send our sincere condolences to his wife and family. Two weeks ago John gave up his Sunday, when he was very sick to help us rescue a monkey that had been electrocuted in Arambol, we hope his work of saving animals will continue.
Ellen Hall A very sad day. RIP John, an animal welfare hero.
Anne Joyce I remember John from when he was a Hunt Saboteur over 30 years ago. He was always passionate about animal rights and will be very sadly missed. RIP John
Jordana Burdon Bailey Rest in peace John. You have achieved so much for animal welfare and it is a pleasure to know you.
Tanya Bandekar RIP. Long may the work continue in your memory xx
Opz Hnialum Puii A man I look up to for his love for animals....its a great loss! RIP John
Julie Shaw R.I.P John, thank you for your hard work n dedication over the years! You made such a huge difference to all the street animals of Goa! XXXX
Tanya Barua salute the man with the golden heart, u will be missed but ur legacy will never die.
Lillian Fernandes Rest in peace John Hicks, International Animal Rescue Goa owes you so much for your committment to the animals.
Elizabeth Grogan-crane Your centre was invaluable to me over the last five years.I brought in so many street dogs and they were treated there by the dedicated staff.Something new will have to be sorted.My thoughts are with you Jo.Lizzy(vol)
Maria Lowe Thank you john for the work you have done with the animals.
Helen Mahtani I had the privilege of meeting John once.. His passion for the animals was so evident through his speech and his manner and he was so true to what he believed in.. It is a great loss to the animals of India, especially Goa.. I m sure he was greeted by millions at the rainbow bridge and is at peace..
Jenny Chahal So sad to hear this news, RIP John. It was a pleasure to have met and talked with you.My thoughts are with you Jo.
Gauri Gharpure I always wanted to meet the man behind the work! Sorry to hear this. RIP.
Angie Wright So sad , I knew him way back when he started up "Animal Activists" and worked at Foal Farm . I managed to see him again about a year ago when he visited the UK. I will always remember his lovely smiling face and his passion for animals . I am sitting in shock here as I cannot believe it . Such a loss . Love to Jo xx
Anurag Borthakur rest in peace john,,, you will always be remembered for the good work you have done.
Sue White So shocked and sorry to hear the sad news, our thoughts are with Jo, friends and family. A wonderful compassionate man who achieved so much for the animals xx
Kate Shervell RIP John. It was a pleasure to work with you - a true advocate of animal welfare.
Tracey Boddy Awww so sad we met him a few times and went to his sanctuary on Exmoor. He was awesome and working against the sick hunt b******* ! He very kindly gave a home to a poor ferret that was lost and we found him in our haystack. RIP and you sure will be surrounded by all the beautiful animals you helped protect who have also crossed over . X
John was extraordinary in that he was one of the very few people doing conservation/rehabilitation work with not just his heart but also with his brain. The conservation community has lost a very decent man.
I always spoke to friends about my Uncle Johns work and said how proud i was of him, reading through so many comments i have seen on facebook fills me with pride that John's (and Jo's) efforts for the animals has been recognised by so many people. John you leave a BIG whole in many peoples and animals hearts, Rest easy now. xxx
I was deeply saddened to hear of Johns passing and sorry I had not had the opportunity to meet him in person. We were in communication via email and had planned to meet up, unfortunately fate decided otherwise. His work was a testament to his devotion to the welfare of animals in need and I pray that it will be continued in honour of his dedication to that cause. A sad sad day for his family and friends of all species.
John was amazing.I knew him back in the 70s with the Hunt Sabs. I remember him leading the charge at The Waterloo Cup, he raised his stick and off we went! A man I was honoured to know. R.I.P you kind wonderful man ï¸xx
Worked with John as a hunt sab, as a volunteer at Foal Farm and then at League Against Cruel Sports over a period of 12 years in '70s and '80s. RIP and all best wishes and condolences to Jo.
No words in this world are enough to explain the pain I felt after hearing the sad, sad, shocking, and unexpected news of John Hicks's sudden and untimely DEATH. May His Soul Rest In Peace. If there is anytime to say that stray animals in Goa are orphaned, then this is the time to say so. Coz their benevolent benefactor is no more to help them. God willing, his legendary work will not stop, never, ever, ever. For, if there are many who with their Ulterior motives and Hidden agendas,wanted to bring him down in every possible way, and they are still trying.They disguise their real reasons i.e. greed for money, power and control of the center and call it they are doing it only for the love of animals of Goa. They are like hungry Vultures waiting to pick on the dead bodies. Let all of them go to hell together. At the same time, there are other helpful, lovable, praiseworthy, adorable,kind, gentle, real and GENUINE animal lovers, who understood John Hicks and his work, will never let the Center down and these people will help in carrying on his legacy. RIP John, we all love you and keep on loving you, UNCONDITIONALLY.
John was like a brother and,after 36 years of friendship with John and Jo, It is hard to take on board that he has is no longer with us. A unique man with great courage, whom with Jo pushed forward the boundaries of animal welfare, in founding International Animal Rescue.And later the Primate Trust India. Jo, my thoughts and heart reach out to you and all that you are now going through. May all those who stand by you at IARGOA and the Primate Trust find the same courage as John had, to carry through with his good work for animal welfare. All good strength be with you !! I'll never ever forget you John!
Rest in peace John, we all loved you and will always love you.
My heartfelt sympathy to Jo. We need more people like John who care about other living creatures and devote their lives to helping them; at least he has made his mark and his work will go on. It's something, too, to have had a long and happy marriage.