Volume 30, number 4/5/6
In the morning of June 20, 2016, one of the key contributors to the resurgence of post-War American Kendo, Kendo and Iaido Kyoshi 7th Dan Pat Yoshitsugu Murosako, passed away at Evergreen Hospital in Kirkland, Washington, not far from Serene Garden, the care center where he had been living. Born January 2, 1921 to Kisayo Kanemitsu and Kaichi Murosako in Fresno, California, he began training in Kendo with his father, and with Nakamura Tokichi Sensei, and was granted Shodan in 1938. After the attack on Pearl Harbor, all West Coast Kendo teachers, including his father, were immediately rounded up and sent to Federal prison, since they were obvious community leaders, and suspected of being Japanese agents or spies. Murosako Sensei headed east to get out of the Pacific military zone. At Fort Sheridan, Illinois, he was inducted into Army intelligence, and served in MIS, specializing in topography. As the War ended, he served in the occupation forces in Japan, and was awarded the Asiatic Pacific Campaign Medal. At the June 2012 AUSKF Iaido Seminar, Mark Uchida Sensei delivered Murosako Sensei's Congressional Gold Medal, the highest civilian award that can be bestowed by the United States. The medal had been presented to the Nisei vets in a November 2, 2011 White House ceremony presided over by House Speaker John Boehner. On June 29, 1952 Murosako Sensei married Susie Shizue Omura, who recently passed away February 6, 2007 from a disastrous fall on the icy front step of their beautiful woodland home. They are survived by one son, James Kazuo Murosako, born June 11, 1956. With the end of the War, Murosako Sensei had turned to the field of art, which he studied formally, then becoming an art director with a prominent Los Angeles ad agency. He became an active participant in the formation of the Kendo Federation of the USA, and the Southern California Kendo Federation. He was intimately involved with the profound argument between high-rankers which led to the split in American Kendo, followed by the birth of the All-US Kendo Federation. Many of his intricate and beautiful Federation artwork designs for logos, tenugui, trophies, and posters are still popular, as are his fabulous styrofoam sculptures. A trueborn artist in multiple media, Murosako Sensei had a beautiful tenor singing voice, and could sit down at the grand piano in his livingroom and accompany himself with great elan. Over his career he founded several Dojo, including Pasadena Buddhist Temple Kendo Club, Meadowbrook, and Musokai. He was tough and uncompromising, almost harsh, in his approach to teaching both Kendo and Iaido, yet compassionate and sentimental, almost tender, to a fault, and always very, very affectionate. "Did D. injure your leg?" "Yes. I did ashi-barai on him, and it worked! But unfortunately he fell down on top of me... heh,heh,heh!" He overcame many serious health afflictions, including Parkinson's and cancer, and almost died June 12, 2007 from a massive dissecting descending aortic aneurism. "They were weak... wimpy! I was showing them how to put power into each cut... then I felt like somebody kicked me in the back!" Given only hours to live, he was rescued by a courageous young surgeon who tried a long-shot surgical approach with about a 90% chance the patient would not survive. Sensei calmly said "Thank you very much, yes please," and once again came back from near death. The PNKF, the AUSKF, and the FIK have lost one of the authentic tough-guy kenshi of legend. We who have known him may feel incredibly privileged, and eager to see him again, Over There.
Women's 0-4 Kyu 1st place - J. DeJong, HLN 1st place - M. Eum, UW 2nd place - B. Lin, UW 2nd place - A. Yorita, UW 3rd place - M. Suzuki, Sno-King 3rd place - N. Macias, UW 3rd place - J. Higa, Bellevue 3rd place - T. Okamura, Bellevue 3-1 Kyu 1-2 Dan 1st place - C. Capoeman, Tacoma 1st place - B. Liao, Bellevue 2nd place - T. Yamashita, Seattle 2nd place - J. Yamauchi, Cascade 3rd place - V. DeBellis, Obukan 3rd place - J. Ohara, UBC 3rd place - B. Valdez-Cruz, Northwest 3rd place - A. Sinclair, Spokane 3 Dan 4 Dan and Above 1st place - T. Okitsu, Tozenji 1st place - T. Hamanaka, Tozenji 2nd place - E. DeJong, UW 2nd place - S. Asaoka, Youshinkan 3rd place - E. Christianson, Edmonds 3rd place - N. Nakano, Steveston 3rd place - J. Okada, Cascade 3rd place - G. Suzaka, Seattle Teams 1st place - Steveston (S.O'Sullivan, D.Yao, I.Takagaki, N.Nakano, E.Hung) 2nd place - Kent (T.Marsten, I.Morgan, C.Marsten, J.Frazier-Day, S.Day) Taikai Chair - Erica DeJong Head Shinpan - Jeffrey Marsten Sportsmanship Pledge - Corey Chan UW Most Improved - Spencer Kua Kazuo and Tomo Shoji Inspirational Award - Corey Chan
Women's Division 1st place - Houston Kendo Kyokai A (Lucy Tan, Alexandra Darrah, Makiko Adachi) 2nd place - Kent (Keeley McManus, Janell Frazier-Day, Vicki Marsten) 3rd place - Bellevue-Highline-Sno-King (Bernice Lin, Erica DeJong, Andrea Kayser) 3rd place - Dallas A (Jennyrayne Colangan, Denise Verastigue, Noemi Arnal) 5-Person Teams Division 1st place - Kent (Ian Morgan, Tiarnan Marsten, Janell Frazier-Day, Terry McManus, Conor Marsten) 2nd place - Arkansas (Amer Mujakic, Jonah Wu, Michiaki Imamura, An Giang, Michio Kajitani) 3rd place - Houston Kendo Kyokai (Makiko Adachi, Alexandra Darrah, Rocky Hui, Lucy Tan, Prudence Sheng-Yi) 3rd place - Dallas A (Zachary Gonzales, Noemi Arnal, Reggie Solitano, Adria Navarro Martin, Masayuki Mizuuchi) Ito Cup team = Sean DeBlieck, CJ Chaney, Noelle Grimes, Bernice Lin, Erica DeJong
10 Years and Under 11 to 12 Years 13 to 14 Years 1st place - H. Koob, Bellevue 1st place - B. Underhill, Northwest 1st place - B. Park, Bellevue 2nd place - A. Mabale, Seattle 2nd place - J. Kim, Federal Way 2nd place - E. Underhill, Northwest 3rd place - N. Chu, Bellevue 3rd place - M. Tawara, Bellevue 3rd place - T. Koob, Bellevue 3rd place - T. Yuen, Seattle 3th place - L. Ohata, Bellevue 3rd place - M. Ohata, Bellevue High School Girls High School Boys 1st place - J. DeJong, Highline 1st place - T. Marsten, Kent 2nd place - J. Higa, Bellevue 2nd place - B. Liao, Bellevue 3rd place - K. McManus, Kent 3rd place - A. Yuen, Seattle 3rd place - M. Blechschmidt, Bellevue 3rd place - A. Nagasawa, Bellevue Junior Teams 1st place - Cascade White (H.Honda, D.Chung, H.Jang, K.Fukuda, S.Terao) 2nd place - Obukan (L.Jesequel, M.Gyldersleve, W.Langford, T.Langford, S.Wetlesen) High School Teams 1st place - Bellevue White (A.Nagasawa, A.Kojima, B.Liao) 2nd place - Kent (K.McManus, T.Marsten) Head Shinpan - Harry Samkange; Taikai Co-Chairs - Allison Kojima, Betty Park, and Jane Higa; National Anthem - Maya Blechschmidt; Competitors' Pledge - Allison Kojima; Master of Ceremonies - CJ Chaney; Awesome Spirit Award - Andrew Nagasawa, Bellevue; Centurion Bellevue Highline Sno-King Youth Leadership Award - Jennifer DeJong, Highline.
9 Years and Under 10 to 12 Years 13 to 15 Years 1st place - K. Yoshimura, Renbu 1st place - L. Shiomi, SFU 1st place - K. Muramatsu, Renfrew 2nd place - D. Gardner, UVic 2nd place - B. Miki, Steveston 2nd place - R. Kim, Renbu 3rd place - D. Buckham, UVic 3rd place - A. Ito, Steveston 3rd place - E. Lee, Renbu 3rd place - E. Majewski, UVic 3rd place - C. Robillard, Steveston 3rd place - E. Chui, Steveston 16 to 20 Years 21 to 30 Years 31 to 40 Years 1st place - A. Lee, Vancouver 1st place - T. Hamanaka, Tozenji 1st place T. Yamada, Vancouver 2nd place - M. Sawaoka, SFU 2nd place - T. Kabata, Renbu 2nd place D. Yao, Steveston 3rd place - H. Shim, Renbu 3rd place - R. Asato, Vancouver 3rd place K. Kobayashi, Youshinkan 3rd place - T. Okitsu, Tozenji 3rd place - K. Takeuch, Youshinkan 3rd place M. Rose, Renfrew 41 Years and Over Women 1st place - S. Asaoka, Youshinkan 1st place - J. Kurahashi, Renbu 2nd place - I. Miki, Steveston 2nd place - Ha Yamada, Vancouver 3rd place - Hi Yamada, Vancouver 3rd place - N. Fukushima, Vancouver 3rd place - J. Schmidt, Vancouver 3rd place - K. Keung, UBC Junior Team Senior Team 1st place - Renbu A 1st place - Vancouver 2nd place - Tozenji 2nd place - Steveston Fighting Spirit Awards - K. Squance, Renbu and D. Chiu, SFU
Women Juniors 12 and Below 1st place - N. Grimes, Sno-King 1st place - J. Shim, Obukan 2nd place - T. Imanishi, Cascade 2nd place - B. Underhill, Northwest 3rd place - R. Wakasaki, Obukan 3rd place - J. Lee, Cascade 3rd place - J. Frazier-Day, Kent 3rd place - D. Han, Kogakukan Juniors 13-15 3 Kyu and Below 1st place - A. Yuen, Seattle 1st place - C. Pak, Portland 2nd place - E. Underhill, Northwest 2nd place - S. Wetlesen, Obukan 3rd place - K. Fukuda, Cascade 3rd place - G. Wroblewski, Bellevue 3rd place - T. Miyamoto, Northwest 3rd place - B. Sprenger, Obukan 2 Kyu and 1 Kyu 1 Dan and 2 Dan 1st place - M. Blechschmidt, Bellevue 1st place - J. Lee, Portland 2nd place - O. Jeong, Kogakukan 2nd place - J. Croes, Portland 3rd place - A. Kojima, Bellevue 3rd place - H. Park, OSU 3rd place - S. Ting, Northwest 3rd place - N. Cook, Portland 3 Dan and Above Senior Dan 1st place - B. Imanishi, Cascade 1st place - R. Elliott, Highline 2nd place - N. Grimes, Sno-King 2nd place - M. Nakamura, Obukan 3rd place - A. Yen, Seattle 3rd place - H. Iba, Bellevue 3rd place - L. Tsybert, Bellevue 3rd place - H. Fukumoto, Seattle Junior Team 1st place - Seattle (Y.Wakasaki, Alec Yuen, An Yuen) 2nd place - Obukan A (J.Shim, T.Langford, S.Wetlesen) 3rd place - Northwest A (B.Underhill, N.Underhill, E.Underhill) 3rd place - Cascade A (H.Jang, JY Lee, K.Fukuda) Adult Team 1st place - Portland A (J.Lee, J.Croes, G.Nakayama, A.Nakayama, S.Choi) 2nd place - Kent (I.Morgan, V.Marsten, J.Frazier-Day, T.Marsten, S.Day) 3rd place - Obukan A (V.Le, K.Gordon, R.Wakasaki, N.Holtorf, M.Nakamura) 3rd place - Sno-King (S.DeBlieck, A.Zee, N.Grimes, R.Elliott, N.Tang)
9 and Under Boys 10-11 Boys 1st place - Taiyo Ariga, SCKO 1st place - Akira Fujiwara, SCKO 2nd place - Takahide Katayama, ECUSKF 2nd place - McCartney Hong, NCKF 3rd place - Jacob Huh, SCKF 3rd place - Allen Sluss, ECUSKF 3rd place - So Imura, SCKO 3rd place - Jonathan Huang, NCKF Kantosho - Keith Adams, ECUSKF Kantosho - Shingo Horiuchi, MWKF Kantosho - Misaki Matsunaga, ECUSKF Kantosho - Collin Shinohara, MWKF Kantosho - Junnosuke Nagamatsu, SCKF Kantosho - Peter Yu, SCKF Kantosho - Kenki Ogata, SCKO Kantosho - Aidan Kwon, SCKO 12-13 Boys 13 and Under Girls 1st place - Tomohide Katayama, ECUSKF 1st place - Aika Onitsuka, NCKF 2nd place - Tylor Wang, WKF 2nd place - Kysa Hayashi, SCKF 3rd place - Paul Ikeda, NCKF 3rd place - Kotone Ariga, SCKO 3rd place - Bryan Yoo, WKF 3rd place - Kokoro Sudo, AEUSKF Kantosho - Josh Kim, PNKF Kantosho - Hana Koob, PNKF Kantosho - Taiki Miyamoto, PNKF Kantosho - Chika Hotta, ECUSKF Kantosho - Daichi Sakuma, MWKF Kantosho - Mahana Koike, ECUSKF Kantosho - Evan Chen, NCKF Kantosho - Summer Kwon, SCKO 14-18 Girls 14-15 Boys 1st place - Taery Kim, SCKF 1st place - Rinnosuke Nagamatsu, SCKF 2nd place - Jaime Tada, SCKF 2nd place - Noah Suzuki, SCKF 3rd place - Maya Blechschmidt, PNKF 3rd place - Kenta Tamura, ECUSKF 3rd place - Sae-Young Hyun, SEUSKF 3rd place - Noah Nakayama, SCKF Kantosho - Jennifer DeJong, PNKF Kantosho - Brian Liao, PNKF Kantosho - Kasey Tada, SCKF Kantosho - Tyler Barrone, MWKF Kantosho - Hanako Kiuchi, SCKO Kantosho - Arata Ogikubo, SCKO Kantosho - Anne Morita, SCKO Kantosho - Steven Yoo, WKF 16-18 Boys 1st place - Ian Kotake, SCKO 2nd place - Michael Farmer, SEUSKF 3rd place - Colin Sherrod, MWKF 3rd place - Gen Takahashi, SCKO Kantosho - Thomas Koizumi, ECUSKF Kantosho - Daniel Choi, SEUSKF Kantosho - Daniel Lee, WKF Kantosho - Branden Wang, WKF Team Youth Boys Girls 1st place - SCKO B 1st place - ECUSKF 1st place - PNKF A (B.Park, J.Higa, J.DeJong) 2nd place - SCKF B 2nd place - SCKO A 2nd place - PNKF B (Keeley McManus,Allison Kojima, Maya Blechschmidt) 3rd place - ECUSKF A 3rd place - SCKF A 3rd place - SCKF B 3rd place - NCKF 3rd place - SCKO B 3rd place - SCKO A
0-2 Kyu Mudansha Murakami Cup 1 Kyu and 1 Dan 1st place - Denise Verastigue, SWKIF 1st place - Jennifer Mayo, RMKIF 2nd place - Nathan Williams, SWKIF 2nd place - Kelly Maier, MWKF 3rd place - Rory Casey, SWKIF 3rd place - Aleasha Jay, RMKIF 3rd place - Gina Konstantopoulos, AEUSKF 3rd place - Celeste Rosell, RMKIF Kantosho - Keita Tanabe, NCKF Kantosho - Thane Mittelstaedt, PNKF Murosako Cup 2 Dan and 3 Dan Yamaguchi Cup 4 Dan and Above 1st place - Yoshimasa Watanabe, NCKF 1st place - Debi Farmer, GNEUSKF 2nd place - Kevin Thibedeau, AEUSKF 2nd place - Joe Sheldon, SUSKIF 3rd place - Richard Davis, RMKIF 3rd place - Jonathan Bannister, PNKF 3rd place - Keiko Miyamori, AEUSKF 3rd place - David Bressler, AEUSKF Kantosho - Rob Tranchin, SWKIF Kantosho - Tsuyoshi George Nishiura, NCKF
Yonenbu 11 Years and Under Seinenbu Open 1st place - Brandyn Matsumoto 1st place - Eric Young 2nd place - Jacob Amano 2nd place - Lotus De Asis 3rd place - Abigail Mejia 3rd place - Zen White 3rd place - Zachary Yamamoto 3rd place - Joshua Amano Shonenbu 12-14 Years Yudansha 1-2 Dan 1st place - Go Hayakawa 1st place - Chase Takenaka 2nd place - Yukinari Ito 2nd place - Kenton Chun Women's Yudansha Yudansha 3-4 Dan 1st place - Gina Kishimoto 1st place - Chris Gooding 2nd place - Gale Mejia 2nd place - Yusuke Masumo 3rd place - Kevin Chun 3rd place - Jordan Miller Yudansha 5 Dan and Above Yudansha Masters 3 Dan and Above Over 40 Years of Age 1st place - Garrett Matsumoto 1st place - Keith Hui 2nd place - Mark Miyamoto 2nd place - Ron Miller 3rd place - Andy Fujimoto 3rd place - Jon Shishido 3rd place - Wesley Fujimoto 3rd place - Jay Suemori Team Parents/Kids Team 1st place - Mililani Kids - 7 2nd place - Kenshikan Parents - 1 James Oka Kantosho Fighting Spirit Award - Ron Miller
AJKF KODANSHA SHINSA, May 6, 2016, Butokuden, Kyoto.
RENSHI: Tomoko Suzuki (Youshinkan).
AUSKF IAIDO SHINSA, June 26, 2016, Dallas
3RD KYU: Jared Bowler (Zen Bu Kan RMKIF), Shamina Chang (Chiba Hokushin Itto Ryu SUSKIF), Hiroyuki Maeda (Idaho PNKF), Huong Tran (Dallas-Fort Worth SWKIF). 2ND KYU: Rory Casey Dallas-Fort Worth SWKIF), Colin Haney (Dallas-Fort Worth SWKIF), Gina Konstantopoulos (Ken-Zen AEUSKF), Apinya Premprajaks (Dallas-Fort Worth SWKIF), Nathan Williams (Dallas-Fort Worth (SWKIF). 1ST KYU: Lora Berger (Castle Rock RMKIF), David Carroll (River City SUSKIF), Shiro Kondo (Ken-Zen AEUSKF) Sangki Lee (Dallas Fort-Worth SWKIF), Ashley Moore (Dallas Fort-Worth SWKIF), Harry Mott (Venice SCKF), Michael Schuldt (Musoshindenryu Agassiz MWKF) Denise Verastigue (Dallas-Fort Worth SWKIF), Joshua Yang (Princeton EUSKF), Sean Zhu (Dallas-Fort Worth SWKIF). 1ST DAN: John Baker (Dallas-Fort Worth SWKIF), Jordy Davis (Zen Bu Kan RMKIF), Jennifer Mayo (Castle Rock RMKIF), Celeste Rosell (Zen Bu Kan RMKIF), Jay Salazar (River City SUSKIF). 2ND DAN: AhmedGaballa El Sayed (Shidogakuin Miami GNEUSKF), Ben Kiang (Houston SUSKIF), Kelly Maier (Musoshindenryu Agassiz MWKF), Allen Smith (Mushinkan SWKIF). 3RD DAN: Richard Flinn (Musoshindenryu Agassiz MWKF), Sean Henderson (Rocky Mountain RMKIF), Serena Tang (Nichibukan JSS EUSKF). 4TH DAN: Ji You Ni (Nichibukan JSS EUSKF), James Smith (AiShinKai Fudo Myoo-Ji PNKF), Rob Tranchin (Dallas-Fort Worth SWKIF), David Yang (Princeton EUSKF). 5TH DAN: Masayasu Ando (Alaska PNKF), Edward Olson (Tonbo PNKF), Steve Sasaki (Salt Lake SWKIF), Joe Sheldon (River City SUSKIF). 6TH DAN: Tomoko Amgwerd-Suzuki (Youshinkan BCKF).
After evening practice, as before, I fixed dogu and made shinai, took care of the dog and scrubbed Ogawa Sensei's or Waka sensei's (Ogawa's son-in-law) baths, walked the dog and closed the gates. Exhausting, grueling, yes, but it all became habit, "no big deal." I was not conscious of how I was absorbing all these activities, known not in my mind but in my body, heart and spirit, transforming me into a Kendoist. I simply recalled what was said to me by Wada Kyoichiro, my sempai: "Everything you do, Nobuto, is Kendo practice. It is your responsibility to observe and learn. Practice, practice, practice!" I was not explicitly forced to do anything, and complimented so rarely that I can recall no direct encouragement. But my spirit was on fire. I felt no pain and practiced and practiced and practiced.
--Rod Nobuto Omoto, Autobiography, edited by Charlotte Omoto, 2014, p. 24. Available as free download at lulu.com.
Kenyu - Monthly Newsletter of the Pacific Northwest Kendo Federation Tom Bolling, Editor - 7318 23rd Avenue N.E., Seattle, WA 98115
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