Modbury Jets FC is mourning the loss of soccer identity and club legend John ‘J.J.’ Jacob.

A life member of the club and highly respected member of the South Australian soccer community, ‘J.J.’ passed away at his home on Sunday 25 January.  He was just 49 years.

“J.J. will be sadly missed by all at the club and throughout the wider soccer community,” said Modbury Jets FC President Neil Henderson.

“He was a wonderful man whose passion for the game was only matched by his dedication and commitment to Modbury Jets FC over some 25 years”.

As one of the state’s most talented player in his teens, J.J. represented Australia in international competition against England and was a member of the South Australian state side for several years before succumbing to career ending injuries in his early 20s.

While battling ill health in later years J.J. maintained his love of soccer and was an ardent follower of Adelaide United.

“J.J. made an enormous contribution to Modbury Soccer Club as an active member of its Senior Football and Grounds Committees and was a true ambassador for the sport in South Australia, “said Neil.

“‘He was a man of great integrity and dignity and had the ability to connect and engage with anyone he met.

“J.J. will be missed by his many friends in South Australian soccer and by us all at Modbury Jets FC, but he will never be forgotten.”

The funeral for John ‘J.J.’ Jacob will take place on Monday 2nd February.

Tributes from J.J.’s many acquaintances

To JJ,

You’ve been such a great mate with all those good times just talking or having a laugh on the verandah at the Modbury club. We grew as close as mates could be and spent many great times together at Hindmarsh watching Adelaide United, or at Modbury or just at our house watching your beloved Aston Villa.

Your friendship will never be forgotten and the place won’t be the same without you around.

Those meals you cooked were simply the best and will always be remembered fondly.

Phil (& Cathy) Taylor – Executive Committee, Modbury and Best Mate

JJ, Mate,

Where do I start? You were not only my best mate, but you lead by example of how to always keep a smile when it was tough going and your countless displays of kindness and respect was simply amazing and something we all admired so very much.

So many great times we had together whether it be up at Modbury watering the pitch or in the heat of a on field battle as Ground Stewards you always had a classic joke or a cheap shot which had me laughing endlessly. Our own jokes while watching Adelaide United, Modbury or Australia will always be remembered and how could we ever forget our Liverpool and Aston Villa nights at all hours yelling at the TV and each other! Just magic and they will remain with me until the day I join you once again.

Having you at our place was like an extended family gathering and your cooking tips and lessons will not be forgotten.

Thanks for everything JJ you’ll always be with us.

Nathan Taylor – Executive Committee, Modbury Jets


My friend,

Always had a smile, a good word and time to listen. I have great memories of the times we shared together both around the club and outside of it. You went through so much in your short life but always kept a positive attitude through tough times. There will be no more pain for you now. Jodie, the kids and myself will miss you so much. It is still hard to take in that you are no longer here with us.

I love ya mate and will miss ya.


I played with John for couple of seasons with Windsor and being new to the Jets I was looking forward to spending some time catching up with John this year and I was sure he would of helped me fit into Modbury because thats the type of guy he was.

I once went to Adelaide United training with my son, not expecting anyone else to be there but no there was John having a laugh with Kossie and the players from the sidelines. I had a good chat with him about our time at Windsor and the people we new from them days. He had a walking stick and was in a fair bit of pain at the time but yet he was making the time and effort to come out to watch United train at Hindmarsh, again because thats the type of guy he was.

His strong love for our great game and the people in it came across so strong, so it was with sadness when I heard of his passing.

RIP John

Keith Levett

Modbury Jets SSF Co-ordinator


Mate you will be sadly missed by all.

The memories of us going to training and all the banter and mischievous little things we did on the way there and back will never be forgotten. The most kindest person I have ever met, even thou you have had a very hard past you always were smiling and laughing and always helped anyone who needed it, with those qualities mate you will be number 1 up there in soccer heaven.

A great loss for Modbury Soccer Club

Please say hi  to your mum and Franny for me.

Condolences Peewee and Family

Your Mate Jimmy Stocco


A great guy who will be sadly missed by all. 

Always had time for a chat and to talk about how good the Villa are.

One of the best players going around in his day!

Condolence’s to Pete, Lodge, Dom, all his family and friends.

The Parker’s

Visit’s to the Jet’s ground will never be the same.

What a tragic loss to football. John was always smiling and never forgot the people he met through football.

 Deepest sympathies to his family.

Always Remembered

Chris L

R.I.P. JJ,

Had the honour of playing along side you at Winsor,a great player and person……

Richard English


How much you will be missed and how a shock like this makes us all realise how short life is. Such a lovely man, always a friendly smile and hello.

How I will miss arriving at the club for meetings or games to find you not there.

Rest peacefully now JJ

 Judy, Bill, Jordan and Aaron Feeney


Whatever we say, your family, mates or people who met you once, it won’t be good enough. I doubt there has been a more likeable lad. Your kindness, sincerity and friendship are the things we will remember. You even got me a job working alongside you, that year was a laugh. Sorry about the Gullit to Villa prank 🙂 A sad and sorry time, but the sadness eases when I see your smiling face, and that’s an imagine I will always have. Thanks mate, for just being JJ.


Grant Jenkins

What a tragic loss to football. John was always smiling and never forgot the people he met through football.

Deepest sympathies to his family. 

Always Remembered


Chris L

Terrible news.

 Will always be remembered as a man who always had a smile and a joke and he remembered those who had crossed his path in the football world.

 RIP to a quality footballer and a top bloke.

Deepest sympathy to his family.

Chris L

Thanks JJ,

You have touched our Families heart in so many ways.

You and I can still mark the lines & put the nets up quicker than anyone else.

(I was stuffed afterwards, but you got the chair first. I used it to climb up, you used it to sit on & tell me what I did wrong).

Over the years,  you have always attended the special family events of ours,  & always brought a gift for the occasion (which we all have & cherish).

Charlene loved the chats you had with her, while she cut your hair (even though during, the dog licked you to death).

And Jarrad listened to what you told him in regards to Football. Your words to him on Thursday Night, sparked him back again.

From Myself & Sue, Knowing you was like being touched by an Angel.


From : Noel Family


You once told me the years had not been kind to you, and explained why.

Your follow up of “life is what you make it so we just get on with it, besides I’ve had a good run” showed the depth of character within you.

I used to walk away thinking about this and the Monty Python song, ‘Always look on the bright side of life’

You did, and you taught me, my sons, and everyone else the same lesson too, never have I met a better teacher than you JJ.

Thanks Mate.

Ian, Tracy, Ryan & Scott Thurston

As a Modbury junior JJ always had advise with a smile and gave you a sense of belonging at the club. Breaking into the seniors he was a bit more serious with his words of wisdom but always had a smile and a wise crack. After a long period away from the club I came back to the club with my son playing there, to catch up with the same old JJ with the same happy personality. Since becoming a ref it has always been nice to find out I’m refereeing Modbury knowing John will be there with a smile, a laugh, a friendly dig at the referee, but you know there is a lot of respect between JJ, the refs the opposition and JJ’s beloved Modbury. Visits to Jet Park won’t be the same.

RIP John

Brad French and family


The last conversation we had was last Wednesday night. Phil, you and I were sat on the verandah at the club joking about trading in your worn out body parts for new ones. You thought it would be a good idea. I will follow through on your project to have some of the senior players go to the Village Shopping centre and promote the club and its facilities to get more people to come to the club which you loved so much. I hope some of the senior players reading this will help fulfil your wish to do this. It wont be the same going to the club and not seeing your smiling face. 10 years ago my sons started playing for the Modbury Jets coached by another club legend Billy Gray. They have always respected and been inspired by you. I will really miss our chats and laughs. Guess we will never get to see you referee from the centre of the pitch while sitting on your walker. Along with Paul, Matt and Dan and my parents Barb and Brian Parker our sincere condolences go to your family and the Jets Club. Gone but certainly never forgotten.


Leanne Else


We keep looking out for that yellow car at Jet Park – can’t believe we won’t see it again.  Such a tragedy that a good person like you should leave us so soon. Your wicked sense of humour and positive spirit will be greatly missed by everyone at the club. When we lost a match you would find a way of cheering us up with one of your comments or stories – always funny even though we’d probably heard it before! You always had time to listen to people and make everyone feel welcome – players and supporters alike.  Modbury won’t be the same with your passing. Farewell my dear friend.

The Reilly family


A great man admired by so many. We are glad dad’s walker helped you get around easier.

Kick some goals up above. No more pain.

Remembered by Barb and Brian Parker.


When I thought about going back to Modbury for the first time this season, whether to watch a game or maybe by fate we draw Modbury in the Cup, I was looking forward to seeing you!! And I couldn’t wait to see if your words would be positive given I would be with an away team but I know they would have been, you would have told me you were ready to go and the boots were in the car in case I needed a striker!

This Sunday we are going to honour you and pay our respects at the ground closest to your home in Klemzig. Adelaide Comets will play Metrostars in a practice match on Sunday night at 7:30pm. Both teams will be wearing black arm bands and there will be a minute silence before the game. I know many of the Metro people saw you regularly and loved having you around the club, I think many were jealous of Modbury as that was were your passion was.

For the three years I was at the club, JJ definitely had many an impact on me and I can quite easily say he was the best club man I came across in my career. All over the country I didn’t come across a more genuine person that loved the game and the people involved and just laughed at the politics or greed that can plague our sport.

We could all do with a little JJ in all of us…..

Barney Smith 
Adelaide Comets Senior Coach

Life is not measured by the years you live, but the love you gave and the things you did. 
The world is far richer, because J.J. was here. 
He will always be remembered and sadly missed at Modbury.

A heart of gold – that was our J.J.

The Bebbington Family – Paul, Julie, Declan and Liam


In the short time I got to know I would like to thank you for making me feel so welcome. Your warmth and understanding made me feel more comfortable in my new surroundings. May I wish your family well in these difficult time and most of all RIP.

Come on Villa.

Kind regards


John Jacob (JJ),

This is your tribute on your life. May I say, I never got to watch you play Football, but hearing from the others is a massive plus that Yes you where a good one. As a person I found you honest and trustworthy. You promised me that, when Liverpool U–23s trained at the club, you would let me know, AND YOU DID. You wrote all the training dates down and times for me. And when they did not turn up on occasions you personaly felt guilty that ide brought young lads down to see them. When they (L.F.C.) where about to leave, you asked for  a certain boy, that I had brought too see them train, if they could send something, and they did, adressed to you. And you waited for us and gave it to the boy, AND YOU DID. With that and knowing you personally You have my RESPECT as a man, and a person.

R.I P. You’ll never walk alone.

The Mogg Family

JJ will be sorely missed by us. 
Preparing the pitch for our occasional 11-a-side games. 
Putting the nets up. 
Sorting out the lights. 
Joining us for numerous Wednesday night drinks. 

A legend. 

Our minute silence before we played last Wednesday was from the heart. 

Miss ya mate!

All the old duffers at Modbury Wednesday


Your warmth & friendliness to everyone was such a joy.  You always had something positive to say no matter the situation.

In the years we have known you, your loyalty & love for The Modbury SC has been very special.

On so many functions/occasions JJ you were there.  Whether it be a game, training, working bee or Bunnings BBQ, you would show your support.

You have left us all with heavy hearts but we are all so much richer for having known you.

The Dean/ Strugnell Family

Hey JJ
RIP Buddy.

I will never forget the first time I met you as you always had a huge smile on your face and you welcomed me in straight away with so much warmth and happiness and of course your classic jokes and laughs will not be forgotten.
I was honoured to have spent so much one-on-one moments with you that will be treasured for life. Going to the Adelaide United Games with you, our nights revving on the Aston Villa and Liverpool, having dinner or just simply chatting and having a laugh down at the club or while watering the pitch i considered special times for me and they will always be remembered.
You were a great a guy JJ, you never let things get to you and carried on with a smile and laugh. You were always so caring, loving, kind and was always there to lend everyone a hand no matter what it was. You touched my heart with your kindness and generosity and your spirit to always fight on when the going got tuff. You will be extremely missed JJ though always remembered and i know you are watching over all of us and will always be with. Also i will never forget how thankful you were for me setting up your new tv and set top box, although we had many laughs doing it and endless hours going around in circles the job was no problem at all. Im glad you loved your Aston Villa scarfe i bought you, that is my present to you.
Once again JJ RIP and keep bringing those jokes!!
 Miss ya heaps mate. xxx ooo


Dearest John

It is with much sadness that you will no longer be here. You know John that a man is not measured by his wealth but by the way they face adversity and overcome. I think John was a great example.

Of this and was to be admired and respected. A very loving and caring brother-in law, always remembered

Judy Jacob


You will be sadly missed, I was lucky to play with you back in 1975 with the state team. Over the years, whenever we crossed paths at Modbury, you were always positive and always willing to give me a few tips. A true gentleman on and off the pitch. My condolences to his family and friends.

Nick Pantsaras


From the days of going to Cobbs Resturant after the games to trying to sign you up for the Old Boys life was brighter when you were a round. Knowing what you have gone thru over the years, you never complained except when we used the wrong nets or put them on upside down. A mate for the past 37 years you were one of a kind a real gentleman.You will never be forgotten.

Condolences to all the family.

Alan Ramsay and The Modbury Jets Old Boys


I still can’t believe you are no longer with us. I have been privileged to be part of this wonderful club and the people that come with it. I know that there have been many standout personalities during the history of our club but my good friend; to me you will always be the best and brightest. I will never forget your kindness, smiling face and advice nor especially waving your stick at Phil and Shaun putting up the nets and marking the lines while we had coffee and a smoke on the verandah.

Last Wednesday you asked me to get Frank’s details for you. Instead I have ended up calling him advising him of your passing. He was shocked and saddened at the news and asked me to write on his behalf:

“John was a fine man; he was a credit to the Jets, Adelaide and Australian football. It was a privilege to be his friend. Liverpool Football Club will never forget his kindness and the help he gave during our visit to Adelaide. Sincere condolences to all his family.  Frank Skelly and staff of Liverpool Academy.”

As I said in my President’s report of 2007:  JJ, thanks for absolutely everything. RIP mate, love ya.

Condolences to all your family.

John Convill and family

To Johnny Jakes

I will never forget the rides home on Friday nights. Lewis also remembers the ride home one night. He remembers because my dad kept on saying “yes c’mon take it” and you were saying “Nah”. But all in all you were a great guy and will be remembered by everyone from the Modbury Football (Soccer) Club.

R.I.P JJ We will never forget you

Nathan Herbener


May you rest in peace with Modbury close to your heart, you will be remembered and sorely missed. You are the nicest guy, wouldn’t hurt anyone and are always willing to do anything for us all. Modbury will do you proud!!

Brez #21 and Rhys #20


We are all at a age when life stops giving us things and starts taking them away. I will always remember the things that we have gone through together from Windsor, to our in depth discussions and directions at Ingle Farm when we spoke, and you picked up on the right track, not many knew and neither should they had. Now while we all sit and are sad, lets not forget what we said life is to live and no  matter what, there is a direction. You was to be the the number 1 with Micky, but you guys didn’t wait for me, so maybe the next step needs to develop, with the club direction, and hopefully I will one day achieve our goals. While I feel that the words are easy you dont know the feelings that I have with my loss, but you know strength comes from that. As a mate it was a prevlige [there’s that draught ] I recall you asking me at Windsor do I go but I want to stay, I said go for the highest you can achieve and you did, and then we sluggled each other at the local derbies only for you to win, I got in the shit for changing shirts, did we sign them. [the club had no money..familiar..only joking your/my sense…] Your love for our club is unheard off [again], but mate from my heart and from one of my favourite ever bands [I wasnt a bad drummer, Powells would know  god bless Sandy]. Say hello to Micky, Franny, etc for me.




Always in my heart Wolf [Dingo]


I still cant believe you are no longer with us, it was so depressing and weird not having you around at the club today…. reminding the boys you were nearly back at full fitness and would be challenging them for their starting spot and giving me tips on my goalkeeping. Even though the tip was the same every time “two hands for beginners”…it would still bring a smile to my face every time, even though i knew it was coming….

Modbury wont be the same without you, and i miss you already…

Paul Reilly


Put quite simply our special friend. Never to be forgotten.

Alex & Wilma Duthie


When we first met way back in 1975 it was a moment that changed my life forever, never to be the same again. As you became my first love and I became yours we traveled along a new road together discovering many new things along the way, always having fun and lots of laughs. You taught me such a great deal JJ, the most important thing was to keep on smiling which I always try to remember to do. You were a true champion, a hugely talented footballer but more than that, you epitomised what being a team man is all about. Your whole life was all about everyone else and very little about yourself. You found it hard to say no, always willing to give every spare moment you had in life to help others. You would give your last coin in your pocket, your last bit of food, your last litre of petrol, your last cigarette just to make sure someone else did not go without. What a legend, what a man…what a true gentleman! You did the common things in life in an uncommon way and you captured the attention of the football family in doing so. Modbury will never be the same again without you neither will the local game. You will always have a special place in my heart John…a place where no one can ever take you away from me. Will miss you dearly my love!

Natalie Adamopoulos