It’s hard to believe but this photo was taken nearly a quarter of a century ago. From our Karate Institute of America archives, courtesy of Jenny “Cougar” Edge, and mugging for the camera during his Black Belt test, is Jeff “Chainsaw” Kelly who went on to become the 18th Black Belt of the Kiado-Ryu. His coronation ceremony was 23 November 1991.
Jeff transferred from another martial arts studio when it closed down. As is the case with all transfers, he had to begin the KIA curriculum from the beginning. This is not an easy task, but different studios teach different curricula and that of the KIA is quite extensive, second to none. Every student en route to a Black Belt, male or female, must learn basic, intermediate and advanced degrees in fighting skills (competitive and street), self-defense techniques, katas (choreographed forms routines), an assortment of weapons katas and basic philosophic principles specific to our Kiado-Ryu martial arts system.
Jeff Kelly was an intense young man. He loved to fight. He loved to perform. He was courageous, strong, determined, highly respectful and honorable. He was not only a joy to have in our Kiado-Ryu family, but an asset to its legacy and heritage.
Photo copyright and courtesy of Genny “Cougar” Edge, Kiado-Ryu Black Belt #13