|Sokuichi Gibu sensei, Dec 1941 - Aug 2012|
I met Gibu sensei back in March 2011, and he left an indelible mark in my mind, for in him I recognized all the hallmarks of a sensei. A person who had transcended the role of mere instructor or teacher, and had become a role model for those wishing to understand the true nature and real value of studying karatedo: the way of karate.
During our meeting, after the interview I was conducting for Blitz magazine was over, Gibu sensei presented me with a couple of gifts. I in return, could only offer him a presentation pen and a copy of my book on Hojo-Undo. He asked me to sign the book, and then accepted my gifts with such enthusiasm as to make me feel a little embarrassed; and later, when photos were taken, he insisted on holding the book. He didn't have to do that, but it was a measure of the man's big heart that he was aware enough of the moment to make me feel good about the gift I'd given him.
The karate world is all the poorer for the passing of Gibu sensei, and I will regret forever not having the opportunity to spend more time in his company. To all Gibu sensei's family, students, and friends, I offer my heart felt condolences for your loss.