Linda Jekubeni kept softball alive

Meshack Khotha

Meshack Khotha

The death of Linda Jekubeni, a former prominent principal, softball administrator, motivational speaker and mentor has left a vacuum in Katlehong, on the East Rand, especially in softball circles.

He was buried on Monday after he died of natural causes last weekend.

Bra Jeff, as he was affectionately known, was passionate about softball and his wish was to see the sport grow in and around Ekurhuleni.

Colleagues and friends this week described Jekubeni as a man who would not hurt a fly.

Thabo Maupa, who was groomed by Jekubeni, said: "Bra Jeff was a loving, forthright,caring, humble and energeticperson.

"He was more of a brother, somebody to rely on in terms of brotherly advice and he would go out of his way to assist.

"It's a pity that his talent was never fully utilised by the mother body, Softball South Africa, during his peak form.

Said Vincent Maoeng, umpire- in-chief in Softball South Africa: "It is a great loss indeed considering the effort he put into developing sports in the townships.

"He produced a lot of good players and coaches at Katlehong Mexican Softball Club as a coach and was a great motivator as well," Maoeng said.

Tsietsi Tenyane, softball coordinator from Ekurhuleni metropolitan municipality, said Jekubeni was more focused in the development of youth in softball.

"He kept softball alive for both development and masters softball teams," said Tenyane.

A teacher by profession, Jekubeni was born in 1951 in Katlehong. He taught at Katlehong High School for more than 10 years. He later became principal of Mponthsheng Secondary School. He retired in 1996.

Softball South Africa said in its tribute to Jekubeni: "There is no doubt that South Africa has lost an administrator and coach of the highest order."