Friends reunite at New Mexico United game after viral plane interaction
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – It’s a reunion a few months in the making. New Mexico United defender Kyle Colonna will escort Janice Jacobs onto the field for Wednesday night’s ball delivery.
This is the first time they’ve seen each other since their flight back home, it’s also Jacobs’ first time at a professional soccer game.
The unlikely friends went viral on social media back in May after an ESPN reporter overheard their sweet conversation and snapped a photo.
“I think it’s unbelievable. We’re just different generations talking, and we have common ground,” said Janice Jacobs.
Jacobs never expected to find a new friend while flying to Denver for her granddaughter’s high school graduation.
“Kyle was seated next to me, and we just started conversation,” Jacobs said.
She says they talked about their families and soccer, but their conversation also had an appetite.
“We started talking about food, and he loves Mexican food. And I have never had Vietnamese food, so he was telling me about that,” she said.
They went their separate ways in Denver not realizing they would soon reunite on the flight back home.
“The soccer team is on the same plane as we are, and Kyle switched seats with one of his teammates so we could sit together,” said Jacobs.
Colonna says they picked up where they left off.
“We got to catching up regarding how the graduation went and how it was seeing her, her son, her granddaughter, and all of those kinds of things,” said Colonna.
For Jacobs, that meant the world.
“It was awesome that a young, intelligent, articulate man like Kyle could remember something in my life. It made me feel so good,” said Jacobs.
Jacobs says they’ve kept in touch over the phone and haven’t forgotten about each other’s favorite foods.
“Trying to find time to come over here to have posole, so I can make him posole,” Jacobs said. “He wants to make me a Vietnamese sandwich like his mother makes. So I’m looking forward to that.”
Two friends, generations apart, united by kindness.
“My motto in my life is to say, ‘Kindness costs nothing, but it means everything.’ So I tried to be kind to everyone,” said Jacobs.
Jacobs says they probably won’t find time to get together until the season winds down, but she’s excited to be here tonight.
She says the team actually sent a car to pick her and her husband up — which was also a first for her.