On 26 August 1941 Karate instructor and humanitarian, John Van Weenen, was born in Enfield, just outside London. He was the second of six children.
In 1964 Van Weenen, along with his brothers Jeff and Garry emigrated to Australia, settling in Adelaide. He and his brother Jeff began Karate training under Moss Hollis, who originally hailed from Birmingham, England. In 1966, Van Weenen was awarded his 1st Dan, just before returning back to the UK.
In 1967 Van Weenen traveled to Japan with friends Eddie Whitcher and Mick Peachey. They hoped to train with their legendary instructor Hirokazu Kanazawa in the country of his birth, at the JKA headquaters.
During the 1990s Van Weenen led humanitarian efforts to help the starving in Albania and Kosovo.