(My friend) Julian and I . . . reflected on how we benefited over many years in our lives from your teaching. Julian told me that he still performed the same warm-up routines and meditation from your classes. It's good to know that you continue with your life's work bringing out the best in people!
My wife and kids (had one more - a son in 2001) have heard lots of “Mr. Starr” stories over the years. I may not have remembered exactly word-for-word but I’ve personally benefitted and derived direction from lots of things you’ve said.
I don’t blindly follow and do what I’m told just because of what “someone” says. I follow because I understand, believe or decide that what I’m told is the right thing.
If you can breathe (properly), you can block, and if you can block, you can fight.
People who make the most of this training aren’t so much those who like it but those who need it.
When you show respect to others, you show respect to yourself and grow stronger.
If you’re ever in an accident . . . and someone is angry, first ask, “Any damage or harm done?” If that person says, “No, but . . .” just apologize as if it were totally your fault and neutralize any conflict.
My dad . . . told me out–of-the-blue “You know I was wrong to not let you get with Hidy Ochiai when you asked me. After you joined up with Mr. Starr in Syracuse, I could see a big difference and you really pulled your life together.
Talking with my friend Julian . . . brought . . . to my awareness how influential in the most positive way you have been and, I’m sure, still are in the lives of your students. I’m reminded of the saying “If you dwell on the past, you rob the present. But if you ignore the past, you rob the future.” Your current students and congregation are lucky people. Thank you one more time. Be well and live long!
I studied with Mr. Starr for a few years in the 1970’s. When I first came into his austere dojo in the basement of a downtown city building, I quickly saw that “something” very important was going on there that I needed. My life wasn’t going well, and I didn’t know why. I cannot count the number of times in the last 40 plus years since then that I drew strength and a path to overcome numerous life challenges from what he taught then and now. I am often filled with gratitude for having had the good fortune to learn in his dojo . . . He often instructed, “This class training is not practice. This is where you learn. Practice after you leave here.” He is the ‘real deal’ in ways that words do not provide a way to describe. If you have the good fortune . . . to be in his classes, do it!
- Henry R.
my twin brother and I trained under you back in the late 70's/early 80's . . . (I) Just wanted to say 'thank you'! The training and discipline you taught us, taught us much more in life. Today I am working in Medical Devices and did 10 years in the Marine Corps Reserves where I served in Desert Storm. My time in the Marines was made somewhat easier because of the discipline and hard work that you taught me in class.
Thank you for your dedication to teaching others- I am stealing your quote from the website: "When you understand yourself, the more likely you are to look kindly upon the actions of others." So true!
- Phillip M.
Dear Mr. Starr,
I want to thank you for all that you gave to me, as my karate instructor in Washin-Ryu Karate Do. When I left home to attend college in Syracuse, I saw a posted invitation to attend an introduction demonstration by Sensei to open a satellite dojo at the Y, where you were to be the head instructor. I went with a friend, and after seeing Sensei's demonstration, and meeting you, we immediately signed up to join your classes. It was one of the best decisions and experiences in my young life at that time. You were, and still are a marvelous teacher and example to all of us. You were amazing at karate, teaching and demonstrating good form, precise technique, and good sportsmanship, and you made it fun. You instilled in us a sense of respect for ourselves and others, and you always encouraged us to do our personal best in everything, not just in karate. You were kind, gentle and compassionate toward your students, but could be fierce and powerful in competition. You easily earned my respect and admiration then, and I found that in the years that followed, that respect and admiration was never displaced. From my early experiences of being your student, I developed a confidence in having some techniques to able to defend myself if ever needed, and also an attachment and continued interest in karate that I feel to this day. I will always feel grateful for your karate and life lessons. Thank you Mr. Starr. Respectfully. Ms. Cook-Edwards
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