It has been more than one year since the passing away of Soke Takayoshi Nagamine on April 25, 2012. We know you all miss Soke Takayoshi Nagamine together with his vigorous loud voice and his childlike smile. Nobody and nothing can fill his vacancy. Althought we have to mourn for Soke Takayoshi Nagamine for many more years we must continue to work hard and spread his legacy around the world without him. Soke might say “Hi guys- why are you so quiet ? Are you sleeping ? Wake up and move on forwards !”
I think you have all done a great job and it would have made Soke very happy. This is because all previous dojoowners except two (one left and the other we were unable to contact due a mailing address change) remain inWMKA. We also have five new dojo owners of which four are current WMKA members and one is a new member.
I think Soke would say in his supernatural spiritual body: “ Thank you everybody. I am glad you didn’t forget me. Show me you can do without me !”. Since you can’t hear from Soke, nor have much news from Okinawa, I want to post miscellaneous news from Okinawa once in a while as the overseas manager. It may not be big news, but I hope you will get some information about Okinawa.
Dan Promotion Test on May 31, 2013.
We had a Dan promotion test at the Nagamine Dojo. Usually we have dan promotion tests twice a year in May and in November. Everyone used to be tested by six teachers and Soke was at the center of them. However, after the passing away of Soke the test was conducted by the five teachers on the picture. Although you all can recognize where it is and the five teachers in the picture, I will explain a little about the pictures. I will also list the names of the teachers on behalf of those WMKA members who may have not have had the chance to come to Okinawa and meet them.
Nagamine Karate Dojo, the birth place of the WMKA. You can see the Grand Master 1st Soke Shoshin Nagamine with “心其正先First purify your mind and手先無手空There is no first attack in karate” on both sides on the front wall.
Mr. Hidenobu Higa hanshi 9th Dan, Mr. Iwao Tome Hanshi 9th Dan & Chairman of the board, President Yoshitaka Taira Hanshi 10th Dan, Vice president Toshimitsu Arakaki Hanshi 10th Dan and Mr. Kyoshi Shinjo Hanshi 9th Dan.
Seven students that took the Dan promotion test under five teachers:
For First Dan; Ms.Arakaki, Ms.Tomori, Ms.Ohshiro& Mr.Makish( Okinawa);For 2nd Dan; Mr. O’Neil (Ireland); For 3rdDan;Mr. O’Malley(Ireland); For 4th Dan; Mr. Okuma (Okinawa).
Mr. Martin O’Malley 3rd Dan and Mr.Michael O’Neill 2nd Dan were the first to take a Dan promotion test in Okinawa after Soke’s Passing away in April,2012. They practiced karate at the Taira Dojo, the Nagamine Dojo, and the Arakaki dojo before their dan promotion test. Though everybody had some technical and philosophical advice from all teachers, they all passed the promotion test.
1. The 9th Karate-Do seminar in Hamamatsu Shizuoka Japan from April 12 to 15.
President Taira was invited to teach the 9th Karate-Do Seminar hosted by WMKA Tokai district. It was the first time president Taira taught them in mainland Japan. Soke had handled the 1st thru 8th seminars previously given and they said he had enjoyed it very much. As there were many women and children, Ms Mayumi Horikawa 5th was together with president Taira. I went there not because of the seminar, but because of the affiliated meeting and my role as overseas manager. The seminar was successfully conducted and every one was satisfied with the result.
There were more than forty participants at seminar on both April 13th and 14th , 2013. They want to host the seminar in every other year in Hamamatsu Shizuoka prefecture, Japan.
Mr. Masaaki Kohagura kyoshi 8th Dan, president Yoshitaka Taira hanshi 10th Dan, Mr. Kunbi Rin kyoshi 8thDan.
President Taira teaching Sai at the seminar.
2. President Taira visited Argentina in December 2012 , his 3rd trip to South America.
President Taira was invited by Mr. Shigehide Akamine kyoshi 8th Dan in Argentina together with two masters, one from another Shorin-ryu school and the other from the Uechi-ryu school. Both come from one of the four major Karate school (Ryuha) in Okinawa. They organized “The Argentina Okinawa Karate Kobudo Association” and Mr. Akamine is the president of the organization. The three Okinawan karate masters were invited to the opening ceremony & karate tournament which also included a karate-do seminar. They all presented their Karate demonstration and impressed the audience. The participants were from seven countries: Brazil,Cuba,USA, Chili, Uruguay, France & Argentina.
There are 24-Dojos under Mr. Akamine kyoshi 8th Dan. In addition to the main headquarters there are also 16 dojos in Argentina, 6 dojos in Uruguay, one dojo in Brazil and one dojo in Chili based according to our local Okinawa newspaper.
3. Karate trips to Okinawa from January to June in 2013.
Below is a list of people who visited Okinawa from January thru June 2013 to practice Karate. Some I met, but others I didn’t meet.
January & February: Mr. Yasuyuki Mizushima 4th Dan in January and Mr. Katsuhiro Tsukamoto Renshi 6th Dan in February came to Okinawa and practiced karate under Mr. Kiyoshi Shinjo Hanshi 9th Dan at Nagamine Dojo. Both of them are from the WMKA Tokai district of mainland Japan.
February: We hosted Karate practitioners that visited from Argentina. They stayed in Okinawa from February 4th to the 21st and practiced at both the Taira Dojo and the Nagamine Dojo.
They were: Mr. Seiko Arakaki, 7th Dan and his disciples: Morihiro Arakaki, 5th Dan,Gerardo Miyasiro, 4th.Dan, Edgardo García Espina 4th. Dan, Martín López Moreno, 2nd. Dan & Darío Marcelo Ernst, 1st. Kyu.
Mr. Seiko Arakaki Kyoshi 7th Dan, President Yoshitaka Taira Hanshi 10th Dan, Mr.Nobuhide Higa Hanshi 9th Dan and students from Argentia together with Mr. Manabu Higa Renshi 6th Dan of the Taira Dojo.
They are learning Bo-kata from both president and Higa sensei at Taira Dojo.
From April to May: We hosted four groups from Australia/Canada /USA/ Ireland.
Mr. Reece Cummings 3rd Dan and Mr. Dave McHugh 1st Dan from Australia practiced Karate at Arakaki Dojo under vice president Toshimitsu Arakaki Hanshi 10th dan from April 22 to May 4th
From right to left: Mr. Steve Trombley Kyoshi 7th Dan, Ms.Louise Power 5th Dan, Ms. Marianne Matchuk 4th Dan from Canada practiced under Mr. Masao Shinzato Kyoshi 8th Dan (center) at Shinzato Dojo. They were in Okinawa from May 4th to 20th and practiced karate at six different dojos: Taira dojo, Arakaki dojo, Tome dojo, Shinzato dojo, Miyagi dojo and the Nagamine Dojo. The young boy in back row is originally from Canada. His father is a Canadian & his mother is an Okinawan. They moved to Okinawa when he was a child and so he is bilingual, of course. He doesn’t commute to the English operated American school in Okinawa. Instead, he goes to Okinawan Local public school. He is in 11th grade in senior high school and passed 1st Dan test last November. We don’t know if his family will live in Okinawa or go back to Canada in future.
They were in Okinawa from May 4th to 20th and practiced karate at six different dojos: Taira dojo, Arakaki dojo, Tome dojo, Shinzato dojo, Miyagi dojo and the Nagamine Dojo. The young boy in back row is originally from Canada. His father is a Canadian & his mother is an Okinawan. They moved to Okinawa when he was a child and so he is bilingual, of course. He doesn’t commute to the English operated American school in Okinawa. Instead, he goes to Okinawan Local public school. He is in 11th grade in senior high school and passed 1st Dan test last November. We don’t know if his family will live in Okinawa or go back to Canada in future.
In May: Mr. Scott Schnell from Iowa practiced karate at the Arakaki Dojo for a few days.
From May to June: Ms. Lara Chambelain Renshi 6th Dan and Ms. Karen Chamberlain 4th Dan were in Okinawa for about two weeks. They practiced karate twice, one time each at the Nagamine dojo and the Makishi dojo. They spent most of their time with Makishi sensei’s family, visiting family and hospital to see Makishi sensei. Very sadly, Makishi sensei passed away on May 31, 2013 as you know from seeing the WMKA Website News page. They were with Makishi sensei’s family at the hospital, wake at home, cremation, funeral and burial service. Makishi sensei joined his ancestor tomb peacefully. Not only on behalf of the bereaved Makishi family, but we are also very appreciate for their concern of Master Yasuharu Makishi Hanshi 10th Dan himself.
We join our hands together for Makishi Sensei’s soul !
4. Karate trips planned to Okinawa from August to December 2013.
The following is a list of the people who have emailed me that they will visit Okinawa within this year. Some have already fixed their schedule, others are still adjusting their schedule.
1) Mr. Craig Gould 2nd Dan, student of Mr. Lawrence Uemura Renshi 6th Dan in Hawaii
2) Mr. Gerard Cappiello Renshi 6th Dan in New York
3) Mr. Scott Mastin Renshi 6th Dan in Ohio
4) Mr. Steve Will 5th Dan in New Jersey
5) Mr. Ole-Bjorn Tuftedal Renshi 6th Dan in Norway
6) Mr. Martin O’Malley 3rd Dan and his students in Ireland
7) Mr.Kevin Plaisted Kyoshi 7th Dan and his students in New Zealand
8) Others want to visit Okinawa but are not sure as of today and will inform me if they can arrange their schedule. Please let me know if I am missing your names.
5. The visitors from overseas from May to December in 2012.
Below, I have also listed the names of those who visited Okinawa last year. Some came because of the passing away of Soke, others came because they promised Soke they would visit Okinawa in 2012. These were:
1) Mr. Fred Christian Kyoshi 8th Dan & Mr. Robert Seibert Kyoshi 7th Dan from Illinos USA.
2) Mr. Steve Trombley Kyoshi 7th Dan from Canada
3) Mr. Martin O’Malley 3rd Dan from Ireland
4) Mr. Lawrence Uemura Renshi 6th Dan from Hawaii USA
5) Mr. Reece Cummings 3rd Dan frm Australia
6) Mr. Scott Schnell 3rd Dan & his friend from Iowa USA
7) Mr. Yaroslav Komarrovski from Nebraska USA
8) Mr. Kevin Plaisted Kyoshi 7th Dan & his two students from New Zealand
9) Mr. Anthony Gibson 2nd dan from Canada
10) Mr. Kelley Wasyaker? from Missouri USA
11) Mr. Ole-Bjorn Tuftedal Renshi 6th Dan from Norway
12) Mr. Martin O’Malley 2nd Dan, Mr.Anthony Whelan 3rd Dan and Mr.Michael O’Neil 1st Dan from Ireland
13) Mr. John Carlyle 5th Dan from Australia.
6. Message from Okinawa concerning the Karate practice in Okinawa.
(1) We here in Okinawa will support and cooperate with all WMKA dojo owners around the world so that they can improve their karate technically and philosophically. Therefore, we will welcome and host everyone who comes to Okinawa to practice karate based on their schedule. However, we can’t stand-by for your sudden and unannounced request. We need your karate trip schedule ahead of time so that we can prepare for you. As you all have a contract with president Taira, you should contact him first, either by direct contact or through me. The sooner the better, so you don’t need to re-adjust your schedule.
(2) We want to know your desired karate practice schedule such as how many times a day or per week. There are two types of karate practice requests. One group wants to practice twice a day six days a week. The other group wants to practice once a day six days a week. We need to know how you want to practice beforehand.
This is a first news from Okinawa but I will do my best to continue it.
We send our best regards to all of you around the world!
Riki Nomura, Overseas Manager WMKA