View Full Version : Jerry Ferguson Shihan (Shito Ryu Karatedo)

Brian Owens
19th November 2006, 11:37
Jerry Ferguson, born June 30, 1960; died November 14, 2006.

Jerry Ferguson, a star in the world of tournament karate, a great teacher, coach, referee, and friend and mentor to many, died on Tuesday and was laid to rest on Saturday in Snohomish, Washington.

I cannot express enough how saddened I was to hear of Jerry's passing. I hadn't seen him in a couple of years, and was just thinking of visiting him at Family Karate Center the very day he died. But I was late for work, and thought I'd do it another day. An opportunity forever lost.

Jerry was my second karate teacher, at the Washington Karate Association dojo on Evergreen Way in Everett, Washington. He was also a friend. I remember fondly the time Jerry and I took his little brother Mickey and one of Mickey's friends to dinner at Bush Garden Japanese Restaurant in Seattle; Mickey not willing to try the tako sashimi (octopus), and Jerry uging him on.

Then there was the time we saw the movie Remo Williams, and for weeks after that, Jerry would parody lines from the movie, imitating the voice of "Master Chun." (When wolfing down Toshi's Teriyaki prior to class) "You must eat very fast" -- after the movie's "You must run very fast." Or (when writing at his desk went awry) "In Korea, pencils do not break" -- after the movie's "In Korea, door handles do not break." Maybe you had to be there, but it was very funny at the time. But that was Jerry; a great sense of humor that always showed through, even when he was being the strict sensei.

Jerry, you will be missed; but your impact on many, many people will live on.

Brian Owens
19th November 2006, 11:52
From the Pacific Karate Organization Web site:

Sensei Jerry Ferguson began his martial arts training at the age of 8 in the classical form of Judo. Upon a move by his family, and with no Judo schools in the area, he enrolled in a Traditional Karate school and has been training and teaching ever since. In 1973, at the age of 12, he was selected to tour Europe as part of the United States National Demonstration Team. There he performed one of the first international exhibitions of Synchronized Team Kata, an event which was to later become an integral part of world competition. Throughout his teen years Sensei Ferguson continued to excel in the sport of karate, winning such prestigious events as the Washington State championships, the Seattle Open and the West Coast Championships.

As an adult competitor Sensei Ferguson qualified for the United States National Karate Team and traveled to Sydney, Australia in 1985 to compete in the World Championships. His competitive accomplishments over the next ten years include: US National Champion, North America Cup double gold medalist, Pan American gold medalist, Hayashi-Ha World Championship silver medalist, and finalist at the World Cup in Budapest, Hungary. In 1989 he was awarded "Athlete of the Year" in the sport of karate by the United States Olympic Committee and was featured in articles in both the "Olympian" and "Sports Illustrated" magazines.

Since retiring from international competition Sensei Ferguson has continued to advance his knowledge and experience in other arenas of traditional Karate. Aside from Shito-ryu he has taken instruction in the Traditional Karate systems of Shotokan, Goju-ryu, Wado-ryu and Kobudo (traditional weapons). This technical knowledge has enabled him to earn certification as a US National Karate Federation Referee and Pan American Union of Karate-do Kumite Judge.

In 1990 Sensei Ferguson was named a US National Team coach and guided the US National women's team to a silver medal at the International Goodwill Championships in Seattle, Washington. He has acted as coach of the United States team in major international events and continues to coach athletes of international caliber at his dojo in Everett, Washington.

In his world travels, Sensei Ferguson has met many practitioners, competitors, Sensei and Masters. These associations have given him a deep appreciation of the cultural heritage of Traditional Karate. His desire to further explore the roots of Traditional Karate led him to seek affiliation with the Shito-ryu International Karate-do Kai. Upon acceptance into this prestigious school he was granted the title of Shihan. As Shihan, Sensei Ferguson is accountable for preserving the integrity of the Seito Shito-ryu system. To this end, he meets frequently with Soke Mabuni and other high-ranking Shito-ryu instructors to share and assimilate information. In turn, he works with the Instructors of the Pacific Karate Organization to insure that this knowledge is correctly conveyed to our student body.

As head instructor of the Pacific Karate Organization, and as a member of the Shihan Kai of North America, Sensei Ferguson is dedicated to the perpetuation of the history, culture and practice of Traditional Karate.

7th May 2012, 06:31
Jerry Ferguson Shihan hung himself after breaking a restraining order with his fiance and her 10 year old daughter that he had sexual contact with. This is after he was prosecuted for molesting a 14 year old girl. (That case ended in a hung jury. I think we know his guilt now.) He was my instructor for over 8 years. He was like a father to me. He betrayed the trust of us all. We knew he had a drinking problem (he taught classes with whiskey on his breath on more than a few occasions), and then we learned that he cheated on his wife with one of his student's fiances, but the depth of his moral bankruptcy really hit rock bottom in the end. I feel sorry for his poor family and all the families he destroyed in his wake.