Wrexham AFC’s ‘King of the Kop’ has died.
Ian ‘Jacko’ Roberts, main singer in the Kop for many years, and later the Glyndwr University Stand, has died at the age of 55 after a long battle with cancer.
Jacko, from Acrefair, was a passionate Reds fan known among supporters for his voice and enthusiasm on the terraces.
And in a fitting nod to his memory, the Racecourse will rise as one in the 55th minute of Wrexham’s game against Eastleigh tomorrow, to recognise Jacko, also a member of the Froncysyllte Male Voice Choir, with a minute of applause.
Club director John Mills led the tributes.
He said: “It is with great sadness that we hear of the passing of Ian ‘Jacko’ Roberts, a legendary Wrexham AFC fan, but above beyond that, a well-loved and respected friend.
”Jacko was the epitome of loyalty and support of his beloved football team, following them all over the country, and whereever he was, you knew he was there, his would be the first voice you’d hear, starting, leading, and cajoling, until everyone was singing along with him.
”For many, he was ‘King of the Kop’, the first influence of many who follow the club, and it shows his standing in his chosen community that young fans who have never even experienced the Kop being open know of him.
”His enthusiasm, commitment and sheer love of life will remain an inspiration to everyone who knew him, know of him, and will follow in his sadly missed steps. RIP Jacko, you’ll always be with us.”
A true life long supporter, Jacko began his battle in 2013 when he was diagnosed with throat cancer. He missed a lot of games around that time due to ill health and the Racecourse didn’t feel the same on match day without him bellowing out a rendition of “Wrexham Lager.”
He made his comeback at the 150th year anniversary game against Grimsby Town in October 2014 and had been attending games since in between his treatments.
A club spokesman said: “All of us here at Wrexham Football Club are extremely saddened to hear about the passing of Ian “Jacko” Roberts at the age of 55.
”His voice is Wrexham and it always will be. Even during the most drab encounter on the field, his voice and enthusiasm for the club could instantly lift the atmosphere and mood.
”Jacko was a kind and gentle man behind all of the singing and will be severely missed by us all here at the club.
”Rest easy Jacko - Forever Red and White. We’ll miss you.”
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