Beisho is pleased to announce the latest publication by Papa Chris Clarke, "Shades of Heroes: Tales of Courage, Honor, Fortitude, and Strategy"

Heroes come in all shades, genders, time-frames, locations, and ages. This book is composed of inspirational stories of heroism, courage, fortitude, compassion, strategy, and honor from a wide range of times and places. They include a range of incidents spanning from ancient Rome to modern military chaplains, from Scots patriots to Tibetan freedom fighters, from mountain men and explorers of the Old West to Native Americans, from both sides of the U.S. Civil war, and from those involved in war to those merely attempting to survive. They include tales of heroic men and equally heroic women. These, of course, represent only a small sampling of the wonderful stories of heroic actions and individuals from around the globe and since the beginning of recorded history. The author hopes that in sharing a few of them, this book demonstrates that our human similarities outweigh our differences and that duty, honor, and compassion are not concepts which are unique to any country or culture, and further, that a greater understanding of our common human strengths and virtues will lead to greater respect and tolerance for our differenceszzz This book is available on (256 pages, $13.75).

Beisho is pleased to announce the publication of the latest book on martial arts history by Papa Chris:
"Budo Meijin: Three Great Little-known 20th Century Japanese Martial Masters."

"Budo Meijin" tells the stories of three fascinating and important, but less-well-known masters of Japanese martial arts. Between them, they span the late 19th to the end of the 20th centuries. Yoshida Kotaro (1883-1966) first learned martial arts from various dispossessed samurai after the Meiji Restoration. He went on to study under the famous Takeda Sokaku (1859-1943) and introduced Ueshiba Morihei, the founder of Aikido, to Takeda, who became Ueshiba's main teacher. Yoshida likely would be completely unknown if not for the seemingly inflated stories told of him by the late Richard Kim. This book attempts to get at the facts behind the legend. The second "martial genius" covered in "Budo Meijin" is Konishi Yasuhiro (1893-1983), a master of jujutsu and kendo and a student of Funakoshi Gichin, Motobu Choki, Mabuni Kenwa, Ueshiba Morihei, and other great masters. It was Konishi who brought karate into the Japanese mainstream and arranged for official recognition of his teachers and many other karate masters. Mochizuki Minoru (1907-2003) was almost certainly the last student of modern Japan's "big three" founders of empty-hand martial arts: Funakoshi, Kano Jigoro (founder of Judo), and Ueshiba (founder of Aikido). Mochizuki was one of a handful of people promoted to 10th dan in Aikido. He also held very high ranks in kendo, kenjutsu, judo, jujutsu, and Japanese kobudo and was the founder of his own "sogo budo" (comprehensive martial arts system), "Yoseikan Aikijujutsu." Mochizuki is not as well known as he should be, partially because his school was not in the Tokyo area and because he focused his overseas attention on Europe. These three were true martial arts geniuses ("budo meijin") whose like will not be seen again. Read about their fascinating lives and activities in this heavily illustrated and extensively documented book, which also contains numerous text boxes of fascinating information relating to their lives and times. 196 pages, $17.95. Available at (

Beisho members and visitors may be interested in the following review Papa Chris posted on

Book Review of "The Art of Ju-jutsu" (Edgar Kruyning) by Papa Christopher M. Clarke (2/20/2015) (May 17, 2009), 428 pages books&ie=UTF8&qid=1424429877&sr=1-2-fkmr0&keywords=kreuyning+jujutsu

Outstanding resource with a few flaws

I really wanted to give this book a five-star rating. It is a goldmine of information across a broad spectrum of martial styles and techniques. Unfortunately, its execution suffered from a few flaws: 1) It is totally unsourced or footnoted. It is sometimes difficult to tell whether the author is speaking or is quoting Mochizuki Minoru Hanshi, his teacher. The historical and biographical information is truncated (and with no sources, contains some dubious or wrong information). I very much wanted to see some new information on Mochizuki, but there was very little. 2) The author's habit of using almost exclusively Japanese terminology connected to the techniques (with no or a single early translation) will be confusing for most martial artists, except maybe Aikido personnel. Even then, Mochizuki (and Kruyning) used some alternative names that will confuse even Aikidoka. 3) The book could have done with much more careful editing and formatting, often a problem with self-published books (as I know too well from personal experience). Finally, 4) as other reviewers have noted, the pictures are too small and indistinct to fully mine all the great nuggets in the techniques. I personally would have preferred to buy two volumes (recognizing that at well over 400 pages, larger photos could not have been accommodated in this edition). All that said, this is well worth buying for anyone interested in any of the martial arts, including MMA. The plea for the importance of sogo budo (a comprehensive system of martial arts) and its guidance in how to construct one is worth the price of admission alone. I hope this is not the last effort we will see in English by this highly qualified and thoughtful author.

We are happy to announce Papa Chris's latest book:
Kimura: The Triumphs and Tragedy of One of Judo's Greatest and Most Controversial Judo Champions

Everyone who has watched a Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) match or tournament has heard of "the kimura," a specialized arm lock that many people try to use, but few are successful in applying. Few, even among jujutsu and MMA aficionados, however, know what the lock called a "kimura" was derived from an early link to karate as well as judo and jujutsu. The story is at once fascinating, inspiring, and tragic. The "kimura" is named after perhaps the best judo competitor who ever lived, Kimura Masahiko (1917-1993). In an age before weight lifting became an integral part of judo practice, Kimura was an avid weight lifter and body builder. He was, and remained, one of the strongest judo competitors throughout the 1930s and 1940s - strongest in both its senses. A judo prodigy in high school, he reportedly lost only four formal judo matches in his entire career, all during his freshman year in college. In 1935, shortly after entering college, he defeated eight fourth-dan opponents in a row, losing only to the ninth man he faced. For this performance he became the youngest fifth dan in Japan. Through the late 1930s and early 1940s, Kimura dominated the judo competition circuit, repeatedly winning the All-Japan championship; he resumed his winning ways after judo was reinstated in 1947. Financially stretched trying to pay for his wife's medical care on a teacher's salary, in 1951, Kimura accepted an invitation to travel to Brazil to teach and compete with the increasingly famous Helio Gracie in Brazilian-rules competition. His bout became legendary: after exhausting minutes of scuffling for position and successful throws, Kimura finally downed Gracie and followed up with an attempt to smother him into submission. He saw the opportunity to apply his favorite ude-garami ("kimura" lock. Refusing to surrender, Gracie suffered a broken arm, and Kimura was declared the winner. Paradoxically, the loss made Gracie even more famous. Kimura's return to Japan was not greeted with acclaim and plaudits, however. Because he had awarded judo promotions without the permission of the Kodokan Headquarters, his promotions were frozen, and he watched as his juniors and inferiors surpassed his 7th dan for the next 40 years. Sadder yet, Kimura entered the shadow world of professional wrestling, largely to make money, where he was betrayed and humiliated. Despite these setbacks, Kimura's spirit never wavered. He taught judo at his alma mater, Takushoku University, from 1960 until his death in 1993, training Olympic bronze and silver medalists and an All-Japan Champion. Although his rank was frozen at 7th dan from the age of 30 until his death at 75 by the petty vindictiveness of the Kodokan authorities, Kimura never lost his spirit. A life-long smoker, Kimura was diagnosed with lung cancer. Hospitalized after surgery, and in his 70s, Kimura started doing push-ups in his room. He died on April 18, 1993 at the age of 75, arguably the best judo competitor ever-and one of the most important judo figures ever to be mistreated by the leaders of his art. You can find the book on at or by searching by title or author's name. (100 page, $9.95)

Congratulations to Sensei Mike Pepe on his retirement from the Watertown, Massachusetts Fire Department after 32 years. Mike has received numerous awards for bravery over his many years as a firefighter.

We wish him well in his retirement.

Beisho is sad to note the passing of the "father of Canadian karate," Masami Tsuruoka (January 12, 1929-October 10, 2014). Born in British Columbia, Tsuruoka was interned with his family during World War II. After the war, Tsuruoka moved with his father to Japan and at age seventeen began the study of Chito-ryu karate in Kumamoto, under Dr. Tsuyoshi Chitose (1898-1984), an Okinawan student of Aragaki Seisho, Kiyan Chotoku, Hanashiro Chomo, Motobu Choyu, and bo master Chinen Sanda. Tsuruoka received his first degree black belt at age twenty, and after continuing his study and receiving his third degree black belt, moved back to Canada in 1956. In 1958, he opened what was reputed to be the first karate dojo in Canada. In 1962, Tsuruoka organized the first karate tournament in Canada and in the same year was recognized by Chitose as Chief Representative of Chito-ryu karate in Canada. From the 1960s on, Tsuruoka was a fixture on the tournament scene in Canada and the US as a referee and judge. In 1979, he stepped down from his position as director of the Canadian Chito-kai and founded his own organization, the Tsuruoka Karate-do Federation. In May 1998, Tsuruoka received the Order of Ontario for his contributions to the martial arts, and in May 2006, was promoted to 10th dan by the Canadian National Karate Association.

Beisho is sad to acknowledge the passing of Shohei-ryu (Uechi-ryu) Hanshi Takamiyagi Shigeru, 10th dan at the age of 79. A mainstay for many years of the Uechi-ryu community, a highly respected teacher and technician, and one of Okinawan karate's premier historians, Takamiyagi Sensei passed away on October 17. Takamiyagi had trained for some 57 years and in 2012 was named a "Person of Exceptional Cultural Merit" by Okinawa Prefecture. A student of Uechi Kanei, the son of the founder of Uechi-ryu, Takamiyagi ran a dojo in Chatan for many years and was an officer of the OKIKUKAI (Okinawan Karatedo Association).

Beisho is sad to report the death of Don Angier, a well-known martial artist and teacher of Yanagi-ryu Jujutsu. Click here to read an autobiographical article on Angier Sensei's remarkable career, posted on the Aikido Journal website. A number of videos of Angier can be found on youtube at

Beisho is pleased to announce the latest publication by Papa Chris Clarke, "Sugino Yoshio: The Little Giant of Modern Japan's Martial Arts." Sugino (December 12, 1904-June 13, 1998) was one of - if not the - most accomplished, widely and deeply trained martial artists of the 20th century. A top student of kenjutsu, judo, aikido and numerous classical weapons, he was also one of the most beloved and respected budo masters in Japan. Yet his story is barely known in the West. He quickly became a judo champion, opening a dojo with Master Kano Jigoro's approval at the age of only 22, undoubtedly one of the youngest people Kano ever sanctioned to teach on his own. At Kano's suggestion, Sugino took up studying one of the few remaining classical jujutsu styles, eventually reaching kyoshi level. At about the same time, and also at Kano's recommendation, he began training in Tenshin Shoden Katori Shinto-ryu, one of the few surviving truly ancient styles of hyogo (the arts of war), which included a huge curriculum of weapons, unarmed combat, military strategy and other subjects. Not yet content that he had plumbed the depths of Japanese budo, at the age of 27, he enrolled as a student of Ueshiba Morihei, the founder of Aikido and a well-known and widely respected martial artist. For the next 60 years, Sugino was a fixture on the Japanese martial arts stage, teaching in a number of locations, training uchi deshi (live-in pupils), and often being called on to demonstrate his art at major national venues. He may best be remembered, however, for having choreographed the weaponry fighting scenes for several of the classic movie collaborations between Director Akira Kurosawa and actor Toshiro Mifune, including the famous duel against seven opponents in the 1956 movie, The Seven Samurai. Sugino lived during a unique time, at the tail-end of the old, traditional, and secretive era of martial arts and the beginning of a new, modern, popularized era. Somehow, through the nature of his personality, his dedication, and his skill, he was able to straddle these two eras and help bring the old koryu into modern times. Such an era will never come again; no one else will have the opportunity he and a handful of other martial artists had to span these epochs. Nor are we likely again soon to see the combination of skill, dedication, versatility, and personality represented by Hanshi Sugino Yoshio (1904-1998). This booklet is available on (78 pages, $6.29).

The European--and world--martial arts community has lost a legend. Master Henri Plee (May 24, 1923-August 19, 2014) was the first person to open a dojo, and the first to open a martial arts store, in Paris as early as 1956. For decades he was a leading voice in all martial arts in Europe, holding a 10th dan in karate (along with dan rank in several styles), a fifth dan in judo, 3rd dan in Aikido, shodan in kendo, and shodan in bojutsu. At 91, he was the oldest and highest-ranking Western martial artist alive. Among his teachers were Ogura Tsuneyoshi (Goju-ryu), Tani Chojiro (Shito-ryu), Nanbu Yoshinao, Mochizuki Minoru, Oshima Tsutomu, Kase Taiji, Shirai Hiroshi, Enoeda Keinosuke, Harada Misusuke, (all Shotokan), Abe Tadashi, Noro Masamichi, (Aikido) and others. His top students included world full-contact champion Dominique Valera (1972) and Guy Sauvin (1972 world karate champion). Plee regularly brought top Japanese masters to Europe for teaching tours and was a founding father of the European Karate Union. Plee was also a prolific author, financing and publishing the first bilingual (French/English) martial arts magazine from 1950-1971.

For more information on his amazing career, see;;i and

"Beisho is sad to announce that Papa Chris's sensei in kendo and iaido, Kotaka Sadao, has passed away at the age of 80. Please see the "Historical Writings" section for a fuller biography of Kotaka Sensei."

Now available. Papa Chris's latest books. "Okinawan Kobudo: A History of Weaponry Styles and Masters" is a comprehensive and complete book on the origins of the Okinawan kobudo (weaponry). It contains a description of the early history of weaponry in the Ryukyus; the relationship of kobudo to karate; and several myths and misunderstandings about Okinawan weaponry. In addition to profiles of nearly a dozen ancient kobudo masters, this book includes detailed histories and analysis of the major lineages/styles of Kobudo, including the Yabiku-Taira, Yamane, Matayoshi, Ufuchiku, and Motobu Udundi (Gotente) schools of kobudo. In each case, the book provides a history of the masters--from the founders to today's masters--analytical assessments of the style's characteristics, descriptions of their curricula, and lineage charts. It contains chapters on each of the weapons of Ryukyu kobudo, including extensive bibliographies on where to find more information about each. The book is lavishly illustrated with photos, art work, maps, tables and charts, including a detailed table of all the major recognized kata for each weapon in Ryukyu kobudo. Its footnotes provide access to a wide array of sources in English, French, German, Spanish, and Japanese--including available videos on the styles and masters--for those who wish to learn more. As the companion to the author's two volume, five-star rated "Okinawan Karate: A History of Styles and Masters," this book is an absolute "must-have" for all serious martial arts students. 392 pages. Amazon price $17.60. Available on (Beisho members, please note. Some of this material was included in the earlier "Beisho Members Only" book "Kobudo," but there are lots of new information and new illustrations in this edition.)
Click here to order through $17.60

Available to the public for the first time. "Ramblings from a Ten Foot Square Hut: Reflections After 50 Years in the Martial Arts." What is a "martial art"? Are we practicing an "art", which by definition is a means of self-expression without the need for any practical application or self-justification? Or are we practicing a "martial" discipline, something that requires effective training in combative technique, that prepares us to defend ourselves, perhaps even to take another person's life or lose our own in self-defense or in the effort to defend our loved ones or our principles? What relationship does our "modern" "martial art" bear to the old samurai way of life, the way of Bushido, the way of the warrior? What should we expect of our "martial arts"--and of ourselves? Related to this, how did we get from the highly practical original Okinawan "te" to the often stylized, unrealistic, and competitive "karatedo" we practice today? Does our modern karatedo provide realistic methods for confronting the kinds of self-defense and combative situations we face in the 21st century? If not, did something get lost in the transmission from the 17th and 18th century to the 21st? The popularization of Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) since the 1990s has reinforced this dilemma for practitioners of such "classical" martial arts as karatedo. Why do our traditional methods not prepare us for grappling or fighting from the floor? Why did classical karate practitioners keep losing to grapplers? Do we need to drop our traditional karatedo and take up MMA to find an effective self-defense or fighting system for the 21st century? These questions bedevil those of us who love and cling to our "traditional" martial arts. This books carefully examines how we arrived at this situation, how various experts have thought about it and attempted to find answers to our dilemma, and provides a sensible, workable set of principles that show that traditional martial arts are not obsolete, that they contain a wide range of effective combative strategies, tactics, and techniques that are just as usable today as they were when they were assembled into "kata", or forms for helping the student remember and practice realistic self-defense and combat while alone. For those wrestling with how to make their karate "work," this is a must-have book. Don't flounder or lose faith. And don't ignore the problem. Buy this book and start to discover your own answers to how to make your karate effective. 208 pages.
Click here to order through $14.20

Beisho is proud to announce the publication of the second volume of Papa Chris's history of Okinawan karate. "Okinawan Karate: A History of Styles and Masters, Volume 2: Fujian Antecedents, Naha-te, Goju-ryu and Other Styles" is the most comprehensive and complete book available on the origins of the Okinawan karate styles that emerged from the Fujian Southern Shaolin boxing styles. It contains a thorough historical description of the Ryukyu kingdom's relations with both China and Japan; the background of the Fujian Southern Shaolin Temple and the various styles of Chinese martial arts that emerged from that lineage; the influence of Fujian boxing on the two great Naha-te styles of Goju-ryu and Uechi-ryu as well as the history of those styles and their major branches and masters; and the histories of Isshin-ryu, Kojo-ryu, Ryuei-ryu, and Motobu Udundi (Gotente). In each case, the book provides analytical assessments of the style's characteristics, descriptions of their curricula, and critical assessments of the accomplishments and controversies surrounding some of their great masters. This book is lavishly illustrated with photos, art work, maps, tables and charts, including a detailed description of the social and court ranks of the Ryukyu kingdom. Its footnotes provide access to a wide array of sources in English, Chinese, and Japanese--including available videos on the styles and masters, where available--for those who wish to learn more. As the companion to Volume One on Shuri-te and Shorin-ryu, this book is a "must-have" for all serious martial arts students." 390 pages, $19.95. Click here to view on amazon:

Legendary boxing trainer, Emanuel Steward passed away on October 28 at age 68. A distinguished amateur boxer himself, Steward rose to fame as the trainer at the well-known Kronk gym, an old-style, seedy boxing school in Detroit that he turned into a stable of champions. Among those he coached to distinction and victory were a record 40 world champions, including Hilmer Kenty, Thomas Hearns, Waldamir Klitschko, Lennox Lewis, Mark Breland, Jimmy Paul, Michael Moorer, Julio Cesar Chavez, Oscar De La Hoya, Evander Holyfield, Michael McCallum, Gerald McClellan, Aaron Pryor, and Leon Spinks.

For more information on Steward, see or

Beisho is proud to announce the promotion of Shihan Jayne Butram to 7th degree black belt (nanadan), effective October 13, 2012. She joins Shihan James A. True, Jr. as Beisho's only 7th dans. Shihan Jayne runs the Okinawan Karate Center in Chesterland, Ohio and is an assistant chief instructor, vice president, and vice chairman of the board of Beisho. Congratulations to Shihan Jayne.

We are pleased to announce that "Father Frog" is now available for sale on An earlier edition was available only to Beisho members. This edition is in a 6" x 9" format, is 146 pages, and costs $12.95. "Father Frog: Asian Stories and Activities for Youngsters" is a charming collection of Asian folk stories and tales for youngsters from five to fifteen, told by old Father Frog. Each story has a moral about good behavior and character. The book is lavishly illustrated with classical Japanese art, original brush paintings by the author, and other delightful illustrations. It contains numerous activities for children ranging from "word find" and "word scramble" puzzles to mazes, coloring, and image matching that will appeal to children of all ages from five and up. This book is a great way for teachers and parents to introduce their children to aspects of traditional Japanese and Chinese society and folklore. Whether you read it to them or they can read it themselves, kids will love it.

I would like to pass on the sad news of the passing of Parker Shelton of Fort Wayne, Indiana. I've included an obituary below. Mr. Shelton was a great Matsubayashi Shorin-Ryu Karate-Ka.

I had the great pleasure of meeting Mr. Shelton on several occasions when I made trips out West to participate in the United States Karate-Do Kai International Tournament held in Peoria, Illinois. The tournament is sponsored by Master Phillip W. Koeppel, head of the Unites States Karate-Do Kai (USKK). This tournament is a long running prestigious national level event. The tournament is also called the "Grand Nationals". Mr. Shelton was a prominent member of the USKK board of directors.

On my first trip out to Fort Wayne in 1996 my Sensei and I spent the night at Mr. Shelton's house. We got to meet his wife Jan. The next day we continued our drive to Peoria, Ill for the tournament.

We spent a lot of time with Mr. Shelton, his instructor Mr. Robert Yarnell, and some of his students (in seminars, having meals, drinking beer, etc). Yarnell's instructor was Jim Wax the first American to receive a Black Belt in Matsubayashi Shorin-Ryu. In 2000 Takayoshi Nagamine was Mr. Koeppel's guest at his tournament, so all of us spent a lot of time together.

Mr. Shelton is featured prominently in Al Weiss's "The Official History of Karate in America The Golden Age:1968-1986". You can see pictures of him with his instructor Mr. Yarnell and fellow Matsubayashi Karate-Ka Glen Keeney and Ross Scott. He's also pictured with other prominent martial artists of the day including Bill Wallace and Chuck Norris.

I warmly remember the times I was able to spend with Mr. Shelton, whether training, enjoying a meal, or conversation. I was honored to have been able to spend a little time with such a great martial artist.

Matsubayashi Shorin-Ryu has lost a great fighter and gentlemen.

Yours in Karate-Do,
Renshi Don Romard

Obituary - Tuesday October 9, 2012

Fort Wayne martial arts grand master Parker Shelton passes

World-renowned karate and judo master was 72
By Blake Sebring

Long-time Fort Wayne martial arts competitor and instructor Parker Shelton died Friday morning at the age of 72. He had been battling lung cancer for several months. Besides being one of the top-ranked competitors in the world in judo and karate, Shelton also trained thousands of students. From 1972 to 1974 he was the nation's No. 1-ranked karate fighter and traveled to Europe and Japan and Korea for competitions. He also taught throughout the world after retiring as a fighter in 1978.

He came to Fort Wayne from St. Louis in 1965, and at one time owned four dojos in town. Originally from Pineville, Ky., Shelton was also the first president of the United States Karate Association.

He was preceded in death by his wife Jan in 2007 (Friday was her birthday) and his son Rickey and is survived by his daughter Chantrell Webb, nephew Bill Shelton and his wife Heather, nephew Parker Lee Shelton, girlfriend Stephanie Hanks and six grandchildren.

Services will be held Sunday, Oct. 7 at the Parker Shelton Bushido Sports Center, 6125 Cross Creek Blvd.. An open house will begin at 1 p.m. and a memorial service at 2 p.m

Beisho is sad once again to have to announce the passing of a relatively young master of the martial arts. Shimabukuro Masayuki Hanshi died on September 8 at the age of 64. Born in Osaka, Japan, Shimabukuro trained beginning in 1975 directly under the supervision of Miura Takeyuki Hidefusa Hanshi, 20th generation Grand Master of the Muso Jikiden Eishin-ryu system of swordsmanship. Shimabukuro Hanshi was the International Chairman of the Nippon Kobudo Jikishin-kai under Miura Hanshi, and for the Iai-do and Batto-do divisions of the Dai Nippon Butoku Kai. He was in charge of the dissemination of authentic Eishin-ryu swordsmanship outside of Japan. Shimabukuro Hanshi was ranked 8th dan in Muso Jikiden Eishin-ryu Iaijutsu, 8th dan in Shito-ryu Karate-do, 7th dan in Shindo Muso-Ryu Jojutsu. He held the title of hanshi, the highest title one can achieve in the traditional Japanese martial arts, in both Iaido and Karate-do. He is probably best known for his widely popular book, Flashing Steel and for his instructional videos. We extend his students and family our deepest sympathies. His contributions were enormous and he will be deeply missed.

Beisho is sad to announce the passing of another of Shorin-ryu's top masters, Gibu Sokuichi, 10th dan. Gibu Sensei, born in December 7, 1941, died at his home unexpectedly at the age of 72 on August 27, shortly after returning to Okinawa from running a training camp in the US. Gibu Sensei began training under Nakazato Shugoro in 1956 and remained with him until setting up his own association, the Shorinryu Butokukan, in 1991. In December of 2005, Hanshi Gibu was promoted to 10th dan by the Zen Nihon Karate-Do Renmei. Gibu Sensei was well known for his strength and spirit. He was considered one of the most talented instructors of his generation, but was equally well known for his humility and kindness towards everyone he met. A well-respected businessman, Gibu Sensei was also a devoted husband and family man. His son. Makato, follows in his father's footsteps by having extremely strong karate and his famous father's kind nature. Gibu Sensei was blessed with four grandchildren, two of whom practice karate at the Hombu dojo and are very gifted karateka. Beisho extends its warm sympathy to Gibu Sensei's family, students, and friends.

"The Beisho Association is proud to announce publication of our newest book, Okinawan Karate: A History of Styles and Masters, Volume 1: Shuri-te and Shorin-ryu. Available through Click here to review and order the book from If you like it, please leave a review. And I hope you do (like it, that is).

"Okinawan Karate: A History of Styles and Masters, Volume 1: Shuri-te and Shorin-ryu" is the most comprehensive and complete book available on the origins of Okinawan Shuri-te and Shorin-ryu karate, with descriptions of the various branches, detailed biographies of the major Okinawan Shuri-te/Shorin-ryu masters from ancient times to today, analytical assessments of some of their accomplishments, and numerous photos and illustrations. This book is a must-have for all serious martial arts students.

We are sad to announce the passing of Nicholas V. Pepe in the month of June. The father of Michael Pepe and father-in-law to Kristen Pepe, Mr. Pepe was married for 58 years. He leaves three children and two grandchildren, Morgan and Nick. Mr. Pepe was a firefighter for 29 years and had been retired for 19 more. He also served two tours in the Navy during the Korean War. He was 82.

Beisho is proud to announce the publication of its latest book, Old Father Frog, a charming collection of Asian folk stories and tales for youngsters from five to fifteen, each with a moral about good behavior and character. The book is lavishly illustrated with classical Japanese art, original brush paintings by the author, and other delightful illustrations. It contains numerous activities for children ranging from "word find" and "word scramble" puzzles to mazes, coloring, image matching, "find the difference," origami, and other crafts that will appeal to children of all ages from five and up. This book is only available through your sensei. Please see him or her for details.

Handmade SKKAA Belt Buckle

  The artwork is laser, into the stainless steel
Size is 4-1/8" x 2-7/8"
Artwork is 2" circle
Signed and dated on the back
There will be a limited amount available at Budo Camp
Contact David Petrie at

Beisho is sad to announce that famed Okinawa te Master Seiyu Oyata passed away on Monday 6/18/12 about 8:30 am. He was 83 years old. He had apparently been ill since at least May and went to the hospital about a week ago. When the surgeons operated, they found a lot of very advanced cancer from which he did not recover. Oyata became well-known in the US for his remarkable ability with kyusho (vital-point fighting) and torite (grappling) and for his willingness to share his knowledge broadly. For his background, see

On this Memorial Day, Beisho asks you to pause and remember those who served and sacrificed for their country.

What Fell Out of My Family Tree While I Was Looking for My Roots

Papa Chris is proud to annouce the publication of his latest book, What Fell Out of My Family Tree While I Was Looking for My Roots. It consists of seven fascinating stories of ancestors spanning over 1000 years. They range from the true story of Lady Godiva and the Anglo-Saxon King Ethelred "The Unready" to the McFarlands who helped settle the West, and from Adeline "Addie" Atkinson who was a pioneer of women's rights in post-Civil War Virginia and who owned and operated one of Richmond's grandest and most important hotels to Sergeant Thomas Barber, who fought in the earliest war in North America, the Pequot War of 1637. The book also tells the story of the author's father, who was in charge of all entertainment for the tens of thousands of troops preparing for D-Day. He narrowly escaped the fate of hundreds of his fellow soldiers when he collapsed from overwork and was not shipped out with his comrades on the ill-fated U.S.S. Leopoldville, which was torpedoed on the way to Europe and sank with massive loss of life. What Fell Out of My Family Tree also contains the poignant story of Absalom Hissey, youngest son of a large family of average Americans, most of whose men served in the Union Army in the Civil War. Seriously wounded at Gettysburg, he was killed at the Battle of Kennesaw Mountain. It took nearly 150 years for a relative--the author--to visit and leave flowers at his grave. Enjoy these true stories. They may inspire you to look for your own roots. You'll be amazed at what you will find in your family tree! What Fell Out of My Family Tree While I Was Looking for My Roots is now available for sale through

Muhammad Ali's Legendary Trainer Angelo Dundee Dies at 90. Dundee died in his apartment in Tampa, Fla., Wednesday night February 1, at the age of 90, and with him a part of boxing died, too.

He was surrounded by his family, said his son, Jimmy, who said his January visit with Muhammad Ali in Louisville, Ky. to celebrate "The Champ's" 70th birthday, meant everything to his Dad. For more information about his legendary career, go to

In this Jan. 14, 2012, file photo, Muhammad Ali, right, celebrates his 70th birthday next to his longtime
trainer Angelo Dundee at a fund raiser for the Muhammad Ali Center in his hometown of Louisville, Ky.
(The Muhammad Ali Center/AP Photo)

Beisho would like to wish you a happy and prosperous Year of the Dragon. . For more information on the Chinese zodiac, the meaning of the Dragon, and whether this is "your" year, see "The Chinese New Year of the Black Water Dragon" in the "Historical Writings" section or purchase Chasing Dragonflies, available under "Books," both on this website.

Sensei Frank Dumont Deceased - October 4, 2011

To My Family in Karate-Do:

It is with profound sadness that I inform you that Uechi-Ryu Sensei Francis "Frankie" Dumont passed to Eternal Live at Lowell, Massachusetts on October 4, 2011 after a brief battle with cancer.

The palpable irony is that my forty-first year in the martial arts began Tuesday night with a fantastic opening night at Andover, with a stellar cast featuring Shihan Dai Mike Pepe. There is marvelous spiritual proportion to be found in this, which speaks to the heart of Karate-Do.

Sensei Frank was my first Sensei, and the source of the profound wisdom that guided me to persist in the martial arts, regardless of style and distance. I can still feel that first spin kick from the very first night, as his wisdom and that kick will live with me for as long as I draw breath.

Fighting not to succumb to grief and babble, as he passes to the Shomen the lessons emerge clearly. As age and health overtake us, the inescapable Truth is that we are all headed this way. Ichi-go, Ichi-e was never more important. The Spirit of Karate-Do mandates that as long as our feet touch the dojo floor we give our best at all times regardless of age, infirmity or physical limitations. It is the nature and Sprit of those who came before us. His obituary appears on page 15 of Thursday's Lowell Sun. I pray that his legacy lives in me, secure only in the knowledge and with his assurance that I never disappointed him.

Sensei Tom

"The Beisho Association is proud to announce publication of our newest book, Saving Japan's Martial Arts. Is available through Click here to review and order the book from If you like it, please leave a review. And I hope you do (like it, that is). Its a fascinating story

Saving Japan's Martial Arts is the story of how a young Japanese school teacher helped spark a martial arts revolution in Japan, rescue Japans ancient martial arts from the brink of oblivion, built Japans Olympic Movement, and became a driving force behind modern education in Japan. It is the only comprehensive biography in English of the remarkable Jigoro Kano (1860-1938), founder of Kodokan Judo. Saving Japan's Martial Arts also contains biographical sketches of more than a dozen top Judo students including Maeda Mitsyo, who taught Judo and Jujutsu to the Gracies in Brazil; Yamashita Yoshiaki, who taught President Theodore Roosevelt Judo in the White House; Shoriki Matsutaro, Judo master, founder of the Yomiuri media empire, creator of professional baseball in Japan, and Japan's first nuclear energy commissioner; and many others. Saving Japan's Martial Arts contains a detailed history of the bloody end of the Tokugawa shogunate, including the political struggles, assassinations and duels, and battles portrayed in the blockbuster 2003 Tom Cruise movie, The Last Samurai. Saving Japan's Martial Arts is chock-full of rare, vintage pictures and descriptions of the training and masters of the ancient Japanese martial arts. It should be required reading for anyone interested in the development of the Asian martial arts and for those who want to understand how those arts survived one of the most tumultuous centuries in Japanese history, a century that saw Japan emerge from an isolated and backward feudal autocracy to a modernized, industrialized major power."

Beisho Belt Pins!
A round, 3/4 diameter, full color replica of the Beisho patch that attaches to the obi with a post and screw-on backing.
(belt pins available through your Sensei - while supplies last)

The Beisho Association extends its heartfelt condolences to Sensei Donny Wong and his family on the passing of his father, Don Wong, Sr.

CHELMSFORD-Don R. Wong, Sr., age 68, a resident of Chelmsford for 40 years died on August 8, 2011 at the Community Hospice House in Merrimack, NH after a brief battle with cancer. He was the beloved husband of Elizabeth H. "Betty" (Carlevale) Wong with whom he would have celebrated 50 years of marriage on August 20.

Don was born on January 8, 1943 in Boston and was a son of the late Done Wing and Rose M. (McCabe) Wong.

He received his early education in Boston area schools. He graduated from Newbury Junior College and then earned his Bachelor Degree in Information Technology.

Don served his country in the United States Air Force during the Vietnam War.

He was a parishioner of St. Mary Parish in Chelmsford

Prior to his retirement, Don was employed for many years as a Senior Systems Programmer Analyst by Zwicker & Associates in Andover. Earlier in his career he had been employed by Family Products, which then became Hussey Plastics in Tyngsboro, Century Bank in Medford, Skyr Clothing in Lawrence and McCracken Financial Solutions in Billerica.

He was a member of the Pelham Fish and Game Club and former member of the Billerica Fish and Game Club. Don had a passion for collecting and shooting fire arms. He also enjoyed camping, salt water fishing, cooking, listening to music, country line dancing, and spending time in the company of his family.

In addition to his wife, Don is survived by his children; Don R. Wong, Jr. and his wife Melissa of Hudson, NH, Michele Spaid and her husband Stan of LaJose, PA, Kim A. Fauvel and her husband Jean-Paul of Hudson, NH, and Anthony P. Wong and his wife Frankie of Murfreesboro, TN and 8 grandchildren; Gabrielle, Mitchell, Justin, Desirre, Amy, Jason, Felicia, and Anthony Joseph. He also leaves two brothers; James Cookson and his wife Tori of Tacoma, WA, and William Cookson and his wife Carol of Bradenton, FL; three sisters; Joan Lightner, Priscilla Lightner of Coalport, PA, and Agnes Joyce Hanlon and her husband Hubert of Arlington, MA; and many nieces and nephews. He was the brother of the late Georgie Cookson.


WONG, DON R. Visiting hours will be held on Wednesday, August 10, from 4 to 8 pm at the BLAKE FUNERAL HOME, 24 Worthen St., CHELMSFORD. His Funeral Mass will be celebrated on FRIDAY, August 12 at 11 o'clock. Burial will be in Pine Ridge Cemetery in Chelmsford. For those who desire, expressions of sympathy in Don's memory may be made to Community Hospice House, 210 Naticook Rd., Merrimack, NH 03054. Funeral Directors Paul A. Hardy, Jr. & Richard P. Burkinshaw. For online condolences visit BLAKEFUNERALHOME.COM.

Blake Funeral Home
24 Worthen Street
Chelmsford, MA 01824
Phone: (978) 256-5251
Fax: (978) 244-1460

The SKKAA is sad to acknowledge the death on May 29, 2011 of Small-Circle Jiu-Jutsu Grandmaster Wally Jay at the age of 93. For more information, see the article of Professor Jay in our web site's "Articles, Essays & Videos."

We'd like to draw your attention to the following newly published books by Papa Chris Clarke. Kamikaze, Samurai, Scoundrels and Saints, and Warriors and Wisemen are all second editions of his popular books from the 1990s, revised, with lavish new illustrations, and in the case of Warriors and Wisemen, significantly expanded with new material. All are easily available through

You may also be interested in Smoke and Mirrors: Echoes From An Iron Lung, a biography of Lorraine Reynolds Woodruff Clarke (1920-1965), along with several collections of her poetry.

"The Beisho Association wishes all its members and friends a safe and happy St. Patrick's Day."


"Beisho wishes all its members, families, and friends a happy and prosperous Year of the Rabbit. According to Chinese tradition, people born in the Year of the Rabbit are articulate, talented, and ambitious. They are virtuous, reserved, and have excellent taste. Rabbit people are admired, trusted, and are often financially lucky. They are fond of gossip but are tactful and generally kind. Rabbit people seldom lose their temper. They are clever at business and being conscientious, never back out of a contract. They would make good gamblers for they have the uncanny gift of choosing the right thing. However, they seldom gamble, as they are conservative and wise. They are most compatible with those born in the years of the Sheep, Pig, and Dog."

It is with great sadness news that Beisho announces that the Ryukyu Shimpo has reported that Shorin-ryu Shidokan founder, Miyahira Katsuya sensei has passed away at the age of 92.

Designated as a Prefectural Intangible Cultural Asset of Okinawan Karate and Kobudo, Katsuya Miyahira died of heart failure at Naha hospital at 8:01 am on November 28 at the age of 92. He was originally from Nishihara Township. The funeral was held from 2:00 to 3:00 pm on November 30 at in Tenku 1192-1 Naha city at the Naha Funeral hall. He is survived by his wife Masae.

Miyahira served as president for the Okinawa Shorin-ryu Karate Association in 1969 and served for the Prefecture Karatedo Federation in 1986. He received the Naha City Government Achievement Award in 1995, and the second Lifetime Achievement Award for Okinawa Karate and Kobudo given by the Ryukyu Newspaper in 1998. He was designated a national intangible cultural asset for Okinawa Karate and Kobudo in 2000. Okinawan Karate Kobudo.

Miyazato Sensei was designated as Shorin-ryu karate founder Chibana Choshin's successor when the latter died in 1969 and was one of the most senior karate masters at the time of his death. In addition to Chibana, he trained under the legendary Tokuda Ambun and Motobu Choki. Among his most senior students are Iha Seikichi in the US, Miyazato Shoei in Argentina, and Chinen Kenyu in France.

Our sympathies are with the Miyahira family and students.

Beisho wishes to extend our wishes for a wonderful Christmas to all our members.

Kids: see the children's activity sections for some fun new Christmas activities! There are new activites in all three age groups for you to enjoy. Happy Holiday!

Beisho wishes to extend the most cordial Hanukkah greetings to all our members.

Kids: see the children's activity sections for some fun Hanukkah activities! Check all three age groups for activities you may enjoy. Happy Holiday.

Now Available from Beisho: Special Belt Racks to display your progress.

                Custom Wood Karate Belt Racks (or Belt Racks) each numbered
                Solid cherry, stained
                Order in your choice of wood and color
                Can build your design with any species of wood and color
                Each rack is hand made (See full specifications below)

Belt Rack Size:
Overall:22" x 26½"
Box: 18½" x 18½"
Squares:5½" x 5½"
· Hanging hook installed on back of each rack
· All racks are numbered & dated
· All solid cherry wood with two different color stains in stock
· Cost: $85.00 plus shipping

           Contact Info:
                David Petrie
                1st. cell 440-823-3202
                Business office voicemail for Distinctive Woodworks is 440-543-0385
                Business fax # 440-543-0386

Beisho Karatedo is proud to announce the election as Beisho Vice President and Assistant Chief Instructor of Michael Pepe and to welcome Terrence Tuy as a member of the Board of Directors.

"Happy Fourth of July to the Beisho Family"

"The Beisho Family wishes all the fathers a Happy Father's Day"

Memorial Day

Memorial Day is a day set aside for all Americans to remember and honor those who have sacrificed for our country. As you enjoy your time off and recreational activities, family get-togethers, and free time, I hope you will take a minute to remember those men and women who have sacrificed their time, their health, and sometimes their lives at the call of their country. We may not all agree that our government has always made the right decisions in sending our young men and women to war over the past 250 years, but we all still owe a debt of gratitude to those willing to drop what they were doing and answer the country's call. Please join me in taking a few minutes out of your day to remember, honor, and thank them for their service.

Also check out A Memorial Day Tribute on our Heroes page

"Happy Mother's Day to all our Beisho Mothers!"

The Beisho family extends its sincere condolences to Sempai Jo McCulty and her family on the recent passing of her father. Our thoughts and prayers are with you during this difficult time.

"THAT'S the Beisho Spirit! Happy St. Patrick's Day!"

6th Annual Awards Banquet 2010, True Martial Arts Academy, Waltham, MA

The True Martial Arts Academy of Waltham held it's 6th annual awards banquet on Feb 6, 2010. Over two hundred people were in attendance to take part in games, face painting, musical chairs, a raffle, dinner, awards, and a demonstration. The raffle helped raise four hundred dollars for the Waltham soup kitchen which was this year's chosen recipient. Over one hundred awards were given out to children, adults, family and civic leaders. Congratulations to all who attended, received awards and helped make the event a great success. To see the names of the award winners, please click here.

Happy Asian Year of the Tiger

("Gongxi Facai" or in Cantonese "Kung Hei Fa Choi" Means "Happy Chinese New Year")

Chinese New Year (or the Asian Spring Festival) began on February 14, 2010, ushering in the Year of the Tiger. Celebrations generally continue for more than two weeks, though public holidays in some Asian countries are usually limited to between three and seven days. The tiger is associated with the element wood, and those born in the year of the tiger are generally considered to be unpredictable, rebellious, colorful, powerful, passionate, daring, impulsive, vigorous, stimulating, sincere, affectionate, humanitarian, and generous. They can also be restless, reckless, impatient, quick-tempered, obstinate, selfish, aggressive, unpredictable, and moody. "Tiger" people tend to enjoy risk and danger. Other "tiger" years include 1914, 1926, 1938, 1950, 1962, 1974, 1986, 1998, 2010, and 2022. Next year will be the "Year of The Rabbit," beginning on February 3, 2011.

According to traditional zodiacal theory, "tiger" years can be explosive, sometimes beginning with a bang and ending with a whimper. Everything , good and bad, can and may be carried to extremes, sometimes resulting in disagreement, war, and disasters of all kinds. Fortunes can be made and lost. If you take a chance, gamble for high stakes, but understand that the odds are stacked against you. Tempers may flare, and it could be a trying time for diplomacy. Like the Tiger, we will tend to charge without thinking and end up regretting our rashness. The tiger year can be used to inject new life and vitality into lost causes, sinking ventures, and drab or failing industries. It will likewise be a time for massive change, for the introduction of new and bold, especially highly controversial ideas. Although the tiger year can be volatile, it could have a cleansing effect. Just as intense heat is necessary to extract precious metals from their ores, so the Tiger year can bring out the best in us. The best advice for this unpredictable year? "Hang on to your sense of humor and let things sizzle out!"

For more information and fun activities, see the Children's section.

Sources: Christopher M. Clarke, Chasing Dragonflies. Huntingtown, MD: 2004;;; and


The Beisho family wishes to send our heart-felt condolences to Jeanne McDonald (Sandan, True Martial Arts Academy, Waltham, MA) and her family for the recent loss of her brother, Chuck. In 2005, Jeanne selflessly donated a kidney to Chuck, which allowed him to live his life more freely. Chuck was Jeanne's older, jocular, yet spiritual brother. She also has a twin, Jim, who along with his children, Jim and Livi, trained under Sensei Mike Pepe. Jeanne advises that "If you are given an opportunity to help someone with an organ donation, I can tell you that it is worth it. It did not hurt me and it helped my brother."

Counter added August17, 2011
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