View Full Version : Ted Davis (Muso Jikiden Eishin-ryu Iaido and Kendo)

8th August 2007, 18:04
I have been sad to learn that Ted Davis passed away last week.

He was a fine teacher of kendo and Muso Jikiden Eishin Ryu. He was also a father, a husband, a professor of biology at the University of Victoria (where he made his home) and much more.

In the days before he took up kendo and iai he was a big-wall climber and mountaineer.

I was privileged to study with him on and off through the 1990s and as recently as 2001.

He was a kendoka of the old school. I believe he trained with the Japanese police regularly. When he taught me kendo, he was not unknown to throw me to the ground and pull off my men. I believe that his approach softened up a bit after those days. Now I find myself reminiscing about those rough and hard hours of keiko.

Ted Sensei never talked much in practice and instead I learned through his crisp technique, his demeanour and his commitment.

Goodbye Sensei.

8th August 2007, 18:06
The following comes from the website of the Canadian Iaido Association(iaido.ca (http://www.iaido.ca)) and was written by Ted's wife:

As you know, in early June, Ted had an operation to remove a tumour from his spine. This left him with minimal ability to use his legs. It turned out that this tumour was caused by a very aggressive cancer. After a month in hospital, he came home, where he was comfortable and happy. He worked hard to get more movement back into his legs, with some success.

But the cancer came back and he had to return to hospital. We knew that he had limited time left and brought him home after 10 days. He had two days at home, supported by me, Logan, his daughter, Jeannine, Logan's mother, and Sue, his sister.

Yesterday, Friday, he died.

Although Ted lived only 60 years, he lived it to the fullest and accomplished more than most people could imagine. He had a strong influence on the lives of a great many people. He was a teacher right to the end - whether it be iaido, kendo, biology, philosophy, or just sharing his understanding of life as he knew it.

I cannot tell you how much I will miss him, as will all of you. But his spirit lives on in each of us, and each in our own way.

We will be holding a memorial service for him this month - the date is not yet chosen but we will let you know. If you would like to send flowers, please wait till then so many people can enjoy them. We are also planning to set up a Ted Davis Biology Scholarship fund as an alternative to flowers. More later when the date is chosen.

Thank you for all your well wishes during the past few months. Ted received them all and was happy that so many of you cared so deeply.

Sincerely, Colleen Kasting

Charles Mahan
8th August 2007, 18:36
There are others who could do this much better than I, but I feel like saying something.

This is truly a loss to the North American Iaido community. Ted Davis was not only a phenomenal MJER sensei, he was the founder of the Canadian Iaido Association, which now has 8 dojos. The group picture from the 2006 seminar has 70 faces in it. No small accomplishment.

He was a very accomplished kendoka and iaidoka, having started training in Iaido back in the early '70s. He was one of those truly gifted individuals who could not only show you his own iai, but could show you the iai of other folks in other lineages, and do it well. Very well.

Davis-sensei was also one of the nicest gentlemen you could ever meet. He was clearly knowlegable about all sorts of things and a real pleasure to talk to. He will be sorely missed, even down here in Texas which he visited for the US Iaido Embukai on a number of occasions. My wife and I were lucky enough to host him in our home a couple of times.

Ice flow
10th August 2007, 01:35
I also had the privilege of training in Iaido with him on several occasions and had the chance to speak to him.

He made an impression on me and was indeed a kind and generous teacher. Being from the Vancouver dojo and a member of his organization I can say our dojo feels the loss deeply.

Here's to Ted Davis Sensei.

Scott Irey
11th August 2007, 23:47
Ted Davis was one of the most influential people in my iai training over the years. I am very comfortable stating that he was truly the finest MJER practitioner outside of Japan. In Japan he was highly regarded for his accomplishments in disseminating MJER iai outside of Japan. His skill and knowledge was widely respected there and indeed in some iai circles he was considered to be one of the finest practitioners anywhere. He was truly a brother to me and his kind demeanor, keen wit, incredible knowledge and indomitable spirit will be sorely missed.