I was born in 1975. When I was a kid, on Saturday mornings, I watched Kung Fu movies. I also watched professional wrestling, WWF and NWA (Summers in Virginia with family), religiously. I LOVED Sho Kosugi’s ninja movies. I loved Mike Tyson. And my best sport in High School was wrestling, during my Senior year I became a private school state champion.
I’ve always loved the art of fighting. But the one thing I never got to do extensively as a child was to take martial arts.
I have no idea why, but I was one of the lucky kids who got to see the very first Ultimate Fighting Championship, which felt like a video game with all the different crazy characters in the game, and the little guy in a Gi with the weird name, Royce Gracie, making men twice his size submit with moves that we couldn’t even understand. Now, Mixed Martial Arts is one of the most popular and fastest-growing sports in the world.
Glory days, the 1993 NY State Private School Wrestling Champs
Four years ago, my youngest son and I started taking HapKiDo together at Yong In Martial Arts under Grand Master Jang K. Lee. I had no idea when I started, but it has become one of the greatest joys of my life. In November 2018, my son and I achieved our 1st degree Black Belts. I am now on the path to attain my 2nd degree, and loving every minute of it.
I recently began training in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu under Master Shawn Hammonds at Nashville MMA. I'm just a white belt but plan to compete often in the Master’s division.
I’m telling you all this so you won’t wonder why the hell I’m always talking about fighting. It’s because I love it, I think about it every day and try to do a little bit of it every day.
Receiving 1st Dan Black Belt in HapKiDo from Grand Master Jang K. Lee