|Instructor Name:Sensei John Devine|
Owner and Master Instructor of the Lebanon Isshinryu Karate School. Over 43yrs of experience. 9th Degree Black Belt.
I began my study of Isshinryu Karate in May of 1968 at the age of 19, with Sensei Ron McClellan, a student of Master Jack Sipe. I earned the rank of Sho Dan on April 4, 1972 and began my training directly under Master Sipe. I had the opportunity to train with Kichiro Shimabuku in both 1971 with Master Sipe and at my own dojo in 1985.
My training with Master Angi Uezu began in Middletown, PA in 1972. I continued my training with Master Uezu when he came to visit and teach at Master Sipe’s dojo numerous times until 1985, when Master Sipe retired from teaching. I became a direct student of Master Uezu in 1986 following Master Sipe’s retirement. In 1986, I began to host Master Uezu’s visits, more than 6 times, including a trip when he brought along his wife, Yukiko. I also traveled wherever Master Uezu would be to continue my training.
I traveled to Okinawa Japan to train with Master Uezu in 1986 and was a part of his demonstration team which participated in the 40th Anniversary Celebration of Isshinryu karate. All sensei’s and students of Isshinryu Karate in Okinawa were represented at the celebration. In 1993 and 1995 I traveled to Okinawa, Japan to train with Master Uezu. In 1999 and 2003 during my next visits to Okinawa, my students and I trained with Master Uezu. My students competed in the Rendokai World Tournament, and I was a judge. In 2005, I again traveled to train with Master Uezu. In 2008, my wife accompanied me to Okinawa, where I was presented my red belt, 9th dan. In 2009, I again traveled with students to Okinawa to train with Master Uezu and compete in the Rendokai World Tournament.
In 1996, Master Uezu appointed me, along with Sensei Reese Rigby, Co-Vice President of the OIKKA, a position I still hold today.