I thought I’d include some friends stories from that day.
In remembrance of SGM Ed Parker, the day is burned in my mind for eternity,
I stepped out the door of Larry Mangone’s Karate Studio in Avon, MA, along with about 30 others that just tested and were promoted to Black Belt. As we emerged victorious after a 6 hour grueling test, we turned on the local radio station, a news blast came on stating that Mr. Parker had suffered a fatal heart attack.
Victory turned to pain and disbelief. Three of us had attended a Parker seminar in Saugus, MA. Our goal was to complete our Black Belt and transfer to learn the “Parker system” and attend more of his seminars.
After what I learned in 6 years of “Shaolin Kenpo”, the three hour seminar with SGM Parker blew us away. His kindness, his speed, confidence, power, exactness as well as his down to earth generosity of knowledge was incredible.
On the anniversary, in my studio for the last 18 years, as we bow in we meditate extra long, and dedicate everything we do in his honor, as if he was standing in front of us…
Mike O’Handley, Massachusetts
I was in the dojo in Chicago waiting for the workout to start.The normally stoic Sifu Lee Wedlake walked in with tears in his eyes, made the announcement and left. We were all stunned.
Peter Boczar, Hong Kong
I remember it like it was yesterday. Mr. Leo Lacerte called me to tell me Mr. Parker had passed. It was a Sunday morning, my Dad woke me up to tell me Leo was on the phone and that he had something important to tell me. When I picked up the phone, Leo said in a sullen tone, “Master Parker died yesterday”, I remember being in a state of disbelief, I thought he was joking, unfortunately he wasn’t. Leo proceeded to tell me he died of a massive heart attack in the Honolulu Airport while on a trip to see his family in Hawaii. It was a sad day, one I will never forget.
Lance Soares, Massachusetts
It was a Sunday morning when I received a call from Sean Kelley letting me know that Mr. Parker had passed away. Not that long before I was at his seminar in Lake Worth, FL and had a discussion with him about coming to my studio in Tampa. That was the last time I saw Mr Parker, the weekend I was promoted to 1st Black. He will always be in all our hearts!!
Ed Cabrera, Florida