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Thread: The Passing of Larry Williams Hanshi

  1. #1
    Devildogmrk is offline
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    Angry The Passing of Larry Williams Hanshi

    Larry Williams Hanshi passed away today. He was not only a significant influence on martial artists in the Kansas City metropolitan area, but has been an inspiration to martial artists throughout the United States.

    Here is a excerpt about Hanshi Williams from the Midori Yama Budokai website:

    They say there is nothing like The Garden on a fight night. We are talking about Madison Square Gardens, the world’s most famous arena located in Manhattan in New York. Many have fought in the world’s most famous ring and Midori Yama Budokai's Hanshi Larry Williams is one of those who fought about 20 fights in the Gardens against some of the world’s greatest including Victor Moore, Louis Delgado, Howard Jackson, and Thomas La Puppit, to name a few. He continued his professional career fighting across the nation with other great fighters such as Chuck Norris, Jim Harrison and Joe Lewis.

    Larry Leon Williams was born on September 4, 1938 in Monett, Missouri. He was one of seven children born to James and Irene Williams who raised their children in Independence, Missouri. He began his marital arts by accident. At age 15 years old he joined a Judo Class being taught at the high school gymnasium by Richard Yenni. This was just the beginning for the 6’ 2” tall 9th grader’s martial arts training. He would continue his long martial arts career becoming a professional fighter. At age 18 he was drafted in the Army and served in Okinawa and Vietnam.

    With his first assignment in Okinawa he continued his training in a karate class taught by Master Nishiyama then on to Vietnam where he trained with Robert Henderson in Shorin-Ryu. Upon returning to the United States in the early 1960’s his professional career began.

    He began fighting with fellow competitors such as Chuck Norris in such places as Ed Parker’s Long Beach Nationals in the mid 1960s. This was one of Chuck Norris’s first fights and Hanshi Williams won! In his professional fighting career, Hanshi Williams won 88 professional fights, 74 of which were knockouts and the others by decision. He lost only two fights and that was to Joe Lewis. The United States Karate Association USKA organized and maintains documentation of these fights. Hanshi Williams has received black belt ranks in several styles, which includes Matsubayashi Shorin-Ryu, Shotokan Karate, Pai Lim Kung Fu, Okinawan Kenpo Kobudo, Jujitsu and Eagle Claw Kung Fu.

    His experiences in the ring were what Pat Burleson stated was the “period of competition justifiably called the "Blood-'n'-Guts Era" of American martial arts. Although the rules stated certain grounds for disqualification most competitors and officials alike ignored them. Fighters were constantly kicked out of the rings. Broken bones and the drawing of blood were common place in the rings.” From his beginning fight with Chuck Norris to his last professional fight with Monster Man Everett in 1981 there are many stories yet untold. He won his last fight with Monster Man Everett but suffered major head injuries that would not let him continue in the professional ring. So from that day forward Hanshi Williams utilizes the martial arts teaching regarding training, attitude, and tenacity to show his students how to turn their individual lives and their martial arts training into success.

    He will be missed and the martial arts community will not be the same without him.
    Devil Dog Mark
    Hawaiian Kempo & Okinawan Kubudo

  2. #2
    gakusei's Avatar
    gakusei is offline
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    Default Re: The Passing of Larry Williams Hanshi

    More Shugyo!

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    Orlando, Florida
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    Default Re: The Passing of Larry Williams Hanshi

    "It is sobering to reflect that one of the best ways to get yourself a reputation as a dangerous citizen these days is to go about repeating the very phrases which our founding fathers used in the struggle for independence." – Charles A. Beard

  4. #4
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    Wichita, Kansas, United States
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    Default Re: The Passing of Larry Williams Hanshi

    ......very sad!

    Williams Hanshi has had such a good reputation throughout the Midwest! One of the best things that you can say about him is that his students are known for quality and for being honorable Budoka!

    He'll be missed, but his legacy will endure!

    Your Brother

    ((if you use "FaceBook", look me up there by name))
    "Striving for success without hard work is like trying to harvest where you haven't planted"
    ~ David Bly

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