Submitted by: Dan Popp, Roku-dan
Chattanooga, TN – July 28, 2012. Three members of the Order of Isshin Ryu attended the 2012 Hall of Fame Banquet and Tournament weekend in Tennessee. Master Bud Ewing, Sensei Dan Popp, and John McNair all made the trek south to represent the OI at this international event. The Friday night awards banquet saw Harrisburg dojo member John McNair, San-kyu, recognized as a finalist for the Male Karate-Ka of the Year award. A big accomplishment considering this category is normally dominated by black belts and instructors. Those inducted into the Hall of Fame this year were the following: Kichiro Shimabuku, Marvin Carmona, Tim Cunningham, Cinday Ingram, Joe Jennings, Robert Scott Klinger, and Tsuyoshi Uechi.
Saturday’s tournament was top-heavy with black belt competition. However, the mudansha ranks were also well-represented and very competitive. Mr. McNair missed placing in the top four of the senior brown belt division with his Wansu kata; however, the scoring for the entire division was very close. Sensei Popp took first place in the master’s kata (6th – 8th dan), which qualified for the kata grand championship (new IHOF rule in 2012). This requires two kata to be judged. All seven finalists gave their all; however, youth took the overall kata title.
Master Ewing, a long-time board member of the Hall of Fame, once again actively judged all day and his efforts kept the day moving along. The weekend proved to be highly successful as many new friends and connections were made.
The 2013 and 2014 Isshin-Ryu Hall of Fame weekend is moving back to Gatlinburg, TN. Let’s all begin to plan now for these events!