This week in history… (27 June – 3 July)

26 June

On 26 June 1965, Hirokazu Kanazawa took his first teaching trip to the BKF’s (British Karate Federation’s) Dundee dojo. He was there for a week.

The Dundee dojo was located at the Dundee United Sporting Club in Coupers Alley, Wellgate. It was run by William McGuire who had become a BKF member in February 1965.

30 June

On 30 June 1956, martial arts historian, Donn Draeger left the Marine Corps. He held the rank of lieutenant.

After leaving the army he attended Georgetown University in Washington DC. However, he moved to Japan, where he continued his studies at Sophia University.

2 July

On 2 July 2013, Shoei Miyazato, a Kobayashi Shorin-Ryu master and early student of Katsuya Miyahira (the successor to Chosin Chibana), died aged 85 years.

Although born in Okinawa, Miyazato attended elementary and high school in Osaka, Japan. As it was during the 2nd World War he had to undergo mandatory training in Kendo, Judo and military affairs.

At the age of 13, Miyazato began learning Shito-Ryu from his uncle. At age 17 he also began to learn boxing.

Miyazato and his family eventually returned back to Okinawa from Japan. He decided to take his Karate training seriously, joining the dojo of Katsuya Miyahira. Miyazato progressed rapidly, eventually becoming Miyahira’s assistant instructor. 1955 he was the first student in the dojo to be awarded a black at the level of 3rd Dan.

In 1959 Miyazato, along with his wife, six children and his parents emigrated to Cordoba, Argentina. He opened his own dojo located on the roof of his house.

Miyazato taught in Cordoba for over fifty years, producing his first black belt in 1966. He would eventually have 60 schools in 15 Argentinian states, as well as schools in Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Peru, Mexico, Uruguay, Spain, Sweden and Israel. He received Argentinian residency in 1979. In honour of his contributions, a monument was erected in Cordoba in 2007.

Miyazato was awarded his 6th Dan in 1965 and would eventually receive the rank of 8th Dan in 1974.

Even though Miyazato lived in Argentina, he kept in contact with his teacher, Miyahira, and other Okinawan masters. He even sent some of his students to train in Okinawa.

Shoei Miyazato died at his home from respiratory failure.

3 July

On 3 July 1965, Hirokazu Kanazawa took his first teaching trip to the BKF’s (British Karate Federation’s) York dojo. He was there for a week.

On 3 July 1971, the 5th KUGB Championships were held at Crystal Palace, London. Terry O’Neill won his first-ever KUGB kata title. G. Haslam became Kumite Champion. The Liverpool Red Triangle Club won its fifth straight Team Kumite title.

On 3 July 2006, multi-world champion, Christophe Pinna was awarded the National Order of Merit for his services to sport. The ceremony was held at the Beau Rivage Beach in his home city of Nice.

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