Nadene Lomu, wife of the Legendary Jonah Lomu, continues to work on the projects she and Jonah were developing together prior to his untimely passing.
"As my promise to Jonah, I am determined to continue working on the dreams Jonah and I had to build on his phenomenal legacy, to help inspire our future generations.”
“Through various Jonah Lomu Scholarships as well as individual and team sponsorships throughout New Zealand and internationally, I have been able to assist in helping others move a few steps closer to achieving their dreams and being able to participate in something they otherwise wouldn’t have been able to.
Dealing with my grief and that of our boys, has been more than difficult but through Jonah's JL11 clothing brand, I have been able to continue helping others by giving them a piece of Jonah, in a sense. I know Jonah has and continues to inspire many not only here in New Zealand but around the world too.
When you put on your special piece of Jonah’s JL11 Collection, it's so much more than a t-shirt, a jersey, a cap or even a hoodie, it’s a reminder of believing in yourself and taking the chance to chase your dreams and never giving up, just like Jonah.
Jonah would often tell me that when he was younger, he would say to himself, "When no one else believes in you, you have to believe in you".
Jonah has left a phenomenal imprint globally. In Nadene’s words, “It’s pretty special having people from the teams I’ve sponsored, to Super Rugby players, All Blacks and even athletes in the fight sports, tell me it’s an honour to wear their Jonah gears and how much they love the clothing”.
“Nowhere outside of New Zealand did Jonah leave a bigger impact than in Hong Kong, where he continues to maintain Legendary status. Not only did he play in HK but visited the HK Sevens many times as an ambassador, which always created the ‘Pied Piper’ effect of how many people, particularly children, who wanted autographs and photos with him, for which he was always so accommodating. Jonah was always happy to be in HK bringing Nadene too, which we considered to be a second home for him. We all miss him but his spirit will always live on in HK.” said former HKRU Chairman Trevor Gregory.
Jonah’s special relationship with Counties Rugby is also recognised by the selection of two Counties recipients annually for the Jonah Lomu Scholarship.
Vice Captain Veveni Lasaqa of the NZ Fijian School Boys team of 2020 who were sponsored to play at the World School Rugby 7's tournament said “As vice captain of this year's NZ Fiji babas for me personally I would like to thank you for sponsoring us for this year's NZ Fiji babas team, it was a privilege and the boys were more than grateful for your support. Without it none of this would have happened.”
To celebrate Jonah’s birthday this year, Nadene and the boys are launching a new scholarship at Rotorua Boys’ High School with Chris Grinter, who was Jonah’s mentor when he was at school. Nadene will be involved in selecting the recipients of the scholarship, which will enable sporting opportunities for school students from year 11.
“Working with Jonah Lomu during his high school years has been one of the highlights of my career in education. I am therefore honoured to have been asked by Nadene Lomu to continue my special connection with Jonah through this scholarship.” Chris Grinter said.
Nadene also says, “Jonah loved music. Many people don’t know he particularly enjoyed programming music selections for an online music radio station.
When Raymond Bishop from the MGN-My Greatest Now Band approached me asking if his band could produce a song to honour Jonah’s life, ‘Jonah - Nothing Is Impossible,’ especially inspired by Jonah, I suggested Jonah’s birthday, May 12 would be a good time to launch the song worldwide.
I feel this is a great way to share his inspiration, especially with the challenges we all face daily.
All music lovers will know what I mean that when you listen to the song, you need to turn up the volume to a Jonah volume loud, the louder the better and you can't help but feel moved and uplifted. Everyone will have their own feelings when they listen to the song but for me it brings out many emotions, even ones where I feel I can take on the world......”
“The song and Jonah’s JL 11 clothing collection, are two ways we can contribute to helping others to not only chase their dreams but to believe in themselves and to be the best they can be. Something that has always been close to both Jonah’s and my Hearts, something I will continue to instil in our boys Brayley and Dhyreille” Nadene said.
To download the song, please go to Spotify or iTunes and enjoy.
For all other information regarding scholarships, sponsorships, and merchandise, please contact Nadene Lomu.
Never would I ever thought a single person could shred my heart into a gazillion pieces, pieces that could never be put back together fully! To this very day, 5 years ago that’s exactly what happened....Jonah, you tore my world apart with your departure to the point I struggled to breathe 💔 ....I know you’d give anything to be here with your boys and I right now, as I would too...just one last anything 😢, everything you ever wanted for us and more, all that we were working for together! 😢.....there’s not a moment that I don’t wish you were still here. I feel sick, I’d rather sleep the entire day away and wake up the next morning just to get through but I can’t, I can’t because your boys need me to be their pillar of strength, they need me to smile even though my insides are hurting and crushed beyond repair. 💔🖤💔 In my moments of weakness you are my strength, I hear you, I feel you and I know you are watching over us and you still walk by my side! I will always stand to be your voice for what you wanted and believed in but most of all, I stand with your strength to be the best I can be for your boys like you asked me too, no matter what, no matter who thinks they know better....
I will always love you Jonah, my heart will always be yours and our boys will always be my everything in this life and the next, till FOREVER. Yours truly. 🥀 - Nadene Lomu
It takes a lot to leave rugby motormouth Keith Quinn speechless and just as much to put a smile on the face of Laurie Mains.
Jonah Lomu achieved both with what remains the greatest individual performance the Rugby World Cup has seen.
Lomu's barging run over the top of England fullback in the 1995 World Cup semifinal in Cape Town was so outrageous that classy Kiwi TV commentator Quinn was literally lost for words as the unbelievable unfolded in front of him.
Then I witnessed Lomu achieve something I'd never seen before – he had his All Blacks coach Mains actually smiling.
From the comfort of the media benches at the Newlands ground I watched history unfold in front of me as a baby-faced Lomu shredded England with the signature performance of his outstanding career.
Mains was seated not far away. After Lomu scored the fourth of his remarkable tries on that historic day, I turned to see what Laurie's reaction was.
He was beaming. The normal furrows had gone, his face alight with a huge smile. Mains knew he and his team were heading to the final.
But he also knew he had someone truly special in his ranks. Like everyone at the ground, he was incredulous at the deeds of the hulking man in the black No 11 jersey.
It took a lot to make Laurie Mains smile. He was a hard taskmaster, an earnest coach, firm but fair, totally dedicated to his teams and a quest for success.
Fairly or unfairly, some of us media had dubbed him "Funeral Face" but his face was joyful as his team buried England.
Mains took charge of the All Blacks at a dark time, when they were emerging from their 1991 World Cup semifinal defeat. Slowly but surely he transformed them. While his crowning glory sadly wasn't the 1995 world title, he did oversee the belated emergence of a flowing style of rugby that had Lomu providing the exclamation marks.
Lomu's notorious training struggles certainly didn't endear him to his coach. At that point no one knew of Lomu’s struggles with his illness aside from his doctor. Despite his medical condition, he never gave up!
Lomu persisted, fighting extra hard with his fitness during the buildup camps to convince Mains he was worthy of a chance on the sport's biggest stage.
Lomu's next test was the World Cup opener against Ireland in Johannesburg, where he scored his first two test tries.
He was under way with bigger things to come.
Laurie was laughing – he and Lomsmiles were appearing on more than the All Blacks and their fans.
Lomu was one of those rare sporting icons who had the ability to cheer people from any nationality and any walk of life.
His Cape Town capers were the stuff of dreams for the faithful band of coloured supporters living there, who would rather back Lomu than the Springboks.
Former England winger saw up close Lomu's devastating impact in unforgettable 1995 RWC semi-final
When Jonah Lomu charged at you at full pelt, there often wasn’t much you could do to stop him – as England found out to our cost in that memorable semi-final in the 1995 World Cup.
Lomu was the fiercest of opponents. His speed, once he got going, his sheer size and the length of his stride meant that he was a difficult man to bring down.
A player who in that match swatted my brother Tony off “like a fly”, as one commentator put it, before storming through attempted tackles by Will Carling and Mike Catt was always going to be remembered by those who love rugby for a long time after the final whistle blew.
Yet Lomu, who has died so tragically young at the age of 40, leaving behind a wife and two young sons, was not just a big guy who ran fast. He was both of those things on the pitch, yes, but he was also supremely skillful. It was this combination – his power and his technical mastery – that made him stand out in the sport.
At the time, I didn’t really take it on board: there were 14 other All Blacks on the pitch that day. Amid all the running and tackling, he just seemed to keep reaching the try line – again and again.
Overall it wasn’t even as if England played that badly – Will Carling and I scored two tries apiece in the second half – but the truth is we had been thumped in the first 20 minutes. Lomu matched us both with four tries of his own.
Looking back on that match, particularly watching replays of his tries, and seeing him steamroller over a few players who got in his way, you could argue that he was ahead of his time by five or 10 years.
Here was a great professional athlete playing right at the end of rugby’s amateur era. His opponents simply weren’t ready for that level of athletic ability.
There was also the crucial matter of timing. The 1995 World Cup was such a key moment for rugby. It was the first World Cup to involve the Springboks and the fact that South Africa hosted it, with Nelson Mandela’s full and public support, ensured that the eyes of the world were on the tournament.
It was at this moment that Jonah Lomu ran on to the stage with a performance that for me had the biggest impact of any player on any Rugby World Cup. It was a performance that helped to usher in the professional era. What a tragedy it was that his career would be cut short by his medical problems.
Lomu was unstoppable on that memorable day in South Africa
Importantly, away from the pitch Jonah was among the kindest and most respectful people you could hope to meet. I had the utmost admiration for him, and we shared the mutual respect of former opponents. In 2007 I flew to New Zealand to appear in an episode of This is Your Life that paid tribute to him.
I was proud to be a part of that small tribute to a fine human being – and am proud now, when I look back on it, to have played against one of the All Blacks’ greats. - Rory Underwood (Telegraph UK).
Thank you Rory for the tribute interview you did for our Jonah with the Telegraph.
Easter....a time of year some may celebrate and others may not however on behalf of Jonah's wife Nadene and their sons Brayley and Dhyreille, they would like to wish each of you their great global fan family a very Happy Easter and a safe weekend to you and your loved ones...
#FlyHighDaddy #TheJonahLomuFamily #JonahsWorld (made by Brayley)
Among the endless global tributes received, Nadene Lomu, wife and global brand manager of Jonah continues to give thanks in appreciation and gratitude for all the support and kindness sent to her and Jonah's little boys.
This was sent in from a great fan family member and in honour of Jonah we are privileged to share it in memory and celebration of the great humble giant Jonah Lomu will always be recognised for both on and off the field. A boy whom transcended rugby into the great game it is today, an icon, an inspiration in overcoming all challenges life threw at him from a young boy, to then turn his life around and becoming the worlds first True Global Superstar, that's our JONAH.
In asking Shane to share his story behind the number 11 tatt, he said, "when I started playin I was 5 and absolutely loved the sport. Especially with it being in my blood as my father is Maori and my mother Welsh so I had no choice really haha. I used to say to my dad, who's that big guy number 11 for the all blacks dad?" he said, "son that's a God sent to destroy anyone in his path" and I grew up saying is the number 11 God playing.
"I religiously watched Jonah every chance I could get and always wanted to play like him, to become what he had become, the most dangerous fantastic player that ever lived. I even shaved my hair exactly the same with a little tufts at the front, I also had the amazing chance of playing against him when he came to Wrexham north Wales, wow that hurt ha ha . Jonah has been an inspiration to me and many others and I say thank you Jonah, for my memories and thank you for making me want to play rugby, I will miss you my idol and will always look up to you as my "GOD" rest in peace Jonah love Shane. Number 1 fan .