Author Topic: Grandmaster Larry Gumataotao  (Read 6289 times)

Offline John Bishop

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Grandmaster Larry Gumataotao
« on: February 10, 2003, 09:29:35 PM »
The late Grandmaster Larry Gumataotao was born in Guam, in 1947.  His first martial arts training began at the age of 6 at the hands of his cousin, Harry Benavente.  He trained in Okinawan/Japanese styles, and later trained in Kenpo in the San Francisco Bay area. 
GM Gumataotao spent some of the 60's  in Viet Nam as a U.S. Marine.  He came back from that war with 3 Purple Hearts, and several other medals for Valor and Bravery.
In 1984, he started Kajukenbo training under GM Max Togisala.  Larry trained with him up to blue belt level, and then had the honor to train with Kajukenbo founder, Sijo Emperado.   He said that training with Sijo was "hard core" training.  Bruises and fat lips were not unheard of.  Part of his training also consisted of punching bags that felt like cement.
Larry learned from Sijo that the fininshing touch to a technique was the ground work.  Sijo instilled in him the belief that a trademark of Kajukenbo was devasting ground work.
      Larry demanded and trained trained his own students the exact way Sijo had trained him. 
Larry received all his black belt promotions from Sijo.  From student black to 8th degree.  9th degree poshumously.
One thing that Larry believed more than anything else in the martial arts, was that he and other Kajukenbo practitioners had a responsibility to look out for the well being of Sijo Emperado.  In other words "Take care of the man".
Before his tragic death in a 1994 traffic accident, Larry promoted several men to black belt.  Most notable are Sigung Raza Ali, and Professor Greg Harper.  Professor Harper is carrying on Larry's tradition of "taking care of the man" by being Sijo's body guard.  It is a rare occasion when you see Sijo without Prof. Harper by his side.   
« Last Edit: July 14, 2006, 04:31:15 PM by John Bishop »
John Bishop  8th Degree-Original Method 
Under Grandmaster Gary Forbach
K.S.D.I. # 478, FMAA

"You watch, once I'm gone, all the snakes will start popping their heads up!"  Sijo Emperado