Posted 21st November
Passing of Karate icon, Jacques Delcourt
It is with sadness that I announce the passing of a Karate icon, Jacques Delcourt, former World President and Honorary President of the WKF.
M Delcourt was born on 21st August 1928 in Northern France. At the age of 15 he fought in the Resistance during WWII and received a bullet wound to the leg a year later that caused him discomfort all his life. He began training in Judo then Karate under Henri Plee, who brought the then little known art to Europe. M Delcourt was elected President of French Karate in 1961 and was a driving force behind the establishment of the European Karate Union in 1964, being named President and organising the first European Championships in 1966. It was his vision that led to the creation of the first World Union of Karate Organisations, that subsequently became the WKF. Jacques Delcourt was elected World President at the first Congress in 1970.
M Delcourt was a lawyer by profession, working in industry. He was highly decorated by the French Government, including the award of Officer of the Legion of Honour. He is survived by his wife, Artlette, daughter and two grandchildren.
Jacques Delcourt played a enormous role in propagating the practice of Karate throughout the world and establishing the governing bodies that are now responsible for the art. He passed away at his home south of Paris on 19th November 2011 and the Karate world has lost a great pioneer.