However U.S. forces kept on the trail of this man, another on their hit list target, and Friday he is reported killed while travelling in a vehicle with one other person, although some reports say four men were travelling together.
The news will be a cause for celebration by those fighting Islamic State forces and its associated terror groups; loved ones of those who were brutally slaughtered by Jihadi John will not lose sleep over his demise.
However there will be some misguided people who will be spurred on to join Islamic State on the back of his death. They may view this man as a martyr and be eager to replace him.
Until the west can get to grip with the root causes of the growth of the Islamic State the battle by all sides will continue
Who was Jihadi John?
In September 2014 British intelligence claimed they were closing in on so-called Jihadi John, a man identified in some brutal promotional videos from terrorist group ISIL or IS. He was named as Mohammed Emwazi, a Kuwaiti-born British man in his mid-20s and from West London.
An English speaking man with an obvious western background he was in many ways the perfect choice for a band of thugs and he was used to front Islamic State terror footage.
His actions were like an extra stab in the heart of the west knowing that there are British, US or European citizens fighting for an Islamic state and using barbaric methods for their cause, at least by western standards.
In September we reported the man believed to have beheaded two US journalists, possibly in Iraq, and dubbed Jihadi John was a low level charity worker in the UK before he travelled abroad and became one of the most sinister and cruel people of the 21st Century, to date.
When intelligence operatives named Emwazi as Jihadi John UK security services confirmed he was known to them but for operational reasons his name was not released earlier.
At that time BBC news reported "We don't know when the British or the American security services worked out that the masked man in the killing videos was Londoner Mohammed Emwazi. But we do know that he was a "person of interest" to MI5 going back to at least 2011 because he features in semi-secret court cases relating to extremism overseas and back in the UK. Nobody in official security circles is going to comment on what they know and why they know it."
The balance between keeping the public informed, authorities showing that they are working to fight threats and keeping operatives, hostages and others safe is a fine line; but once again what shocked are semi-secret court cases and that this man as a threat potentially dates back to 2011.
Perhaps more shocking he was known to British intelligence since at least 2009; there are reports that U.K. security services tried to recruit this young man, he would have been aged around 21 at the time, to work for them.
We will update as more information is released and confirmed.
From our archived reports;
Claims I.S. fed mother her dead son
Peter Kassig and Syrian troops beheaded
British intelligence closing in on beheader Jihadi John