A free soul he was

Janne Granberg 1962 – 2000 (Photo: Selina Fong)

Janne Granberg was a beautiful soul equipped with an unusually bright intellect. He was also my brother for 38 years.

Janne was born with an ernest curiosity, a super sharp intellect and yet had a very humble and pleasant attitude towards others. He was easy to get along with and the best and funniest friend I have ever had. I have heard tons of anecdotes where he managed to use his wit and sense of humor to brighten people up, when they needed it the most.

So, smart as he was, he had hardly finished mandatory schools before becoming a very early computer geek. In his early teens he started by becoming an audio nerd. He built his own stereos, soldering iron in one hand, and with a hacksaw in the other he constructed ridiculously large and very impressive speakers. Later, while working as a janitor at Bankgirot computer center, he saw a machine he came to love – the computer. He knew what he wanted to do.

dn18nov2000He picked up programming during coffee breaks with the programmers working there, and soon enough found himself in a superfast career. In 1994 he moved to California to work for Tandem Computers Research facilities in Silicon valley, where he became part of a small team who developed the first true non-stop computers for international money transfer systems.

Professional skateboarder

Janne was also a professional skateboarder during the 1980:s first skateboardboom in Sweden. Under the name of Pipe-Janne he competed, quite unchallenged, for the Swedish national skateboardteam as a ramp rider.

He was born august 28, 1962 in Stockholm, Sweden. Janne, me and our sister Lena grew up in Tungelsta, a small village south of Stockholm in Sweden.

He died in a plane crash october 1st, 2000, together with the rest of the people onboard including the pilot. The crash happened in the US.

Inspiring spirit

Janne has been my best friend. He was a truly supportive person and had a remarkable ability to press the right buttons that made me smile no matter how grumpy I was. Not just me by the way, but as mentioned above, most people around him could not help but smile when he was around.

He lived his last years in Santa Cruz where he had a loving relationship with Allison Cruz.

Janne was also a huge source of inspiration for many people and was engaged in a lot of activities including ultimate frisbee, surfing, skiing, hiking etc. He was also a talented and devoted photographer and he loved the Burning Man festivals – the perfect scene for him I would say 🙂

Janne is one of those inspiring spirits who for some un-eartly reason had to be yanked away from life as we know it, far too yearly.

It’s a tragic loss to the whole world that he is gone, and especially for those of us who was close to him.

Janne, you are truly and dearly missed!

Janne biking in Black Rock Desert, Nevada. Burningman 2000.

Janne biking in Black Rock Desert, Nevada. Burningman 2000.


  1. Lena Arleij 13 oktober, 2014 at 20:36

    Jag är så glad och tacksam att du håller Janne vid liv! Du är fantastisk! /Lena

  2. Björn 13 oktober, 2014 at 20:44

    Ja, det bara blir så – saknar honom ju, den rackaren 🙂

  3. Danny Simpson 12 oktober, 2016 at 06:18

    Mina gamla vanner, Bjorn och Lena, jag ar sa valdight ledsen at just nu kom at veta om din Bror, Pipe-Janne. I mit minnen han ar fortfarande den utrolight kul, rolight och snel kille som jag kanner fran Tungelsta, Stockholm och New York. Som du ses, jag kan fortfarande inte skriva pa Svenska so into English I’ll go. Even though I hadn’t seen your Brother since about 1995 when we partied pretty hard for the last time in New York, I never forgot him. The first skateboard he ever rode was mine. I gave it to him when I went back to the States many years ago and by the time I came back the following year he was the best skateboarder I’d ever seen. I can still remember the volume of the crazy, giant stereo system he built after getting his first skateboarding contract. We had some amazing and hilariously great times running around to concerts, clubs, bars all over Stockholm and amazingly we managed to mostly stay out of trouble. I’ll never forget getting the phone call from him while I was away at college in Salt Lake City, Utah telling me that he had been thrown out of Jamaica for ”out-Rasta ING the Rastafarians”. Only Janne could do that. My father picked him up at Kennedy Airport and he stayed at my Parent’s house in New Jersey for a few days until he could get back safely to Sweden. I loved Janne like my own Brother and I’m so, so sorry that life got in the way for both of us and we lost touch. It’s crazy, I know, but i was thinking about trying to get to Sweden in the Spring to visit my Uncle Nenne and his family and I did a search for Janne online hoping to see him and you guys after all these years. When I read your remembrance posting I cried like a baby. Please accept my humble apologies for being so out of touch and my belated truly heartfelt thoughts, prayers and love to you and your entire families. I honestly never forgot about Janne, you Bjorn and Lena as well. I know I’m ridiculously late with this message but absolutely feel free to reach out to me if you desire. Peace and much Love from your old friend, Danny Simpson
    Cellphone: 917.324.2078

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