By Staff Writer
Voice & Viewpoint
The United Karate Federation and the American Kenpo Association held a joint Banquet honoring grand masters of both associations.
The Banquet/Promotion event was held at the Sunrise Buffet in Kerny Mesa last Saturday evening with about 150 people in attendance from all across Southern California. The audience was a mixture of Old Masters, Students and family and for many it was a great reunion for persons who had not seen each other for long periods of time. The event marked the promotion of two well known local Martial Artists, Reynaldo Leal and Orned “Chicken” Gabriel, both of whom were promoted to 9th Degree Black Belt and recognized by the Worldwide Martial Arts Council as “Grand Masters” of the Martial Arts.
Grand Master Byron Mantack,. a Board Member of the Worldwide Martial Arts Council and a local Martial Artist represented the Council in the conferring of the certificates of recognition as “Grand Masters) with a very strong showing of other and older Grand Masters in attendance with their unique and colorful uniforms. The two individuals promoted at this event to the rank of a 9th Degree Black Belt, in American Kenpo Karate, received their new belts form Grand Master MIck Leone. The members of the Worldwide Martial Council through its executive board which consisted of Grand Master John Olivier; Grand Master Gary Amen; Grand Master Eric Lee; Grand Master Damian Mohler; Sifu Ewart Chin; Sifu Samual Kwok, Ms. Dana Stamos, and Grand Master Byron Mantack. Also presented certificates of recognition to Grand Master Donnie Williams, Grand Master David Chaanine; Grand Master Mick Roberts; Grand Master Dr. Mick Leone; and Grand Master John “Big T” Turnage. This recognition was the “Stamp of Approval” that the Masters so named are certified and legitimate Grand Masters of the Martial Arts.
Dr. John E. Warren, a Martial Artist and Pastor, gave the invocation and a special thanks was extended to the hard working committee that arranged the event, bringing Grand Masters from as far away as Colorado and Los Angeles. The Committee members were Grand Master Byron Manack, Grand Master Renaldo Leal, and Master Robert (foot) Sumler.
For additional information of the Worldwide Martial Arts Council visit their web site at www.worldwidemartialartscouncil.com
Photos by TJ Dunnivant: