In herinnering aan

Sensei Leon Pantanowitz

It is with great sorrow that we announce the passing of Sensei Yehuda (Leon) Pantanowitz, 8th Dan, on October 12th, 2006. He was the leader and founder of Israeli karate and the Karate Federation of Israel.

May he rest in peace.

Leon Pantanowitz SenseiLeon Pantanowitz Sensei en Norma Herentals1999Leon Pantanowitz Sensei kata


Letter of condolence from IOGKF Belgium

Dear Mrs. Pantanowitz and IOGKF Israël,

It was with great astonishment we heared the news about the illness of Sensei Leon and it is with even greater astonishment we heared about his passing away. We would like to express our sincere condolences to you and your family. I'm sorry we can not be there with you to support you and your family but I'm sure your students will be there for you!
Sensei Leon was a great friend and a good teacher. His passing away is a great lost for you and your family but also for IOGKF. It will never be the same without him.
We will always carry him in our heart. We will always remember his enthusiasm when he talked about his family and about Okinawan Goju-Ryu karate. We will miss his "Hello Belgium" when we arrived at a gasshuku.
Norma I know you are a strong women but that does not make it easier. Please take care of yourself and we hope to see you as soon as possible.

Patrick and Mieke Curinckx
and all Belgian IOGKFmember

Sensei Jan Swinnen

Jan Swinnen SenseiSensei Jan Swinnen werd geboren op 26 januari 1940. Hij is rustig ingeslapen op 12 januari 2009.
Op donderdag 15 januari en op vrijdag 16 januari namen wij met velen van onze club afscheid van deze bijzondere man en goede vriend.
Wij willen jullie bedanken voor jullie aanwezigheid en jullie blijken van medeleven, ook in naam van zijn vrouw Godelieve. Sensei Jan heeft zich jarenlang ingezet voor onze club en het doet deugd dat dit door velen geapprecieerd werd!

Jan, de karateclub was voor jou een belangrijk deel van je leven en we willen dan hier ook onze dank betuigen. Helaas moeten we hier afscheid van je nemen maar je was voor onze club een belangrijke schakel. Je beoefende het Okinawa Goju-Ryu karate reeds 33 jaar. Vanaf het eerste moment, bij de oprichting van onze club in 1979, was je onze secretaris en je zette je dan ook al bijna 30 jaar onvoorwaardelijk in, zowel als secretaris, als hulptrainer en als vertrouwenspersoon. Vele van onze leden leerden van jou de eerste basistechnieken op de karatetraining, 33 jaar lang, met engelengeduld, steeds weer opnieuw.
Je was ook jarenlang onze vertegenwoordiger op menige vergadering. Je stond steeds paraat voor onze vereniging, steeds ten dienste van…, nooit uit eigen belang. Maar wat misschien nog wel het belangrijkste is, je was voor velen een echte vriend met het hart op de juiste plaats.
Wij nomineerden jou in onze gemeente voor de trofee “sportverdienste van het jaar 2008” , spijtig genoeg kan je de uitreiking van de trofee niet meer meemaken, de huldiging in onze gemeente gebeurt namelijk in de maand februari maar voor ons heb je deze trofee meer dan verdiend.

Jan, we zullen je nooit vergeten!
Godelieve, we wensen jou, je kinderen en je kleinkinderen veel sterkte. We zullen er voor je zijn, net zoals Jan er steeds was voor ons!

Fotoalbum Jan Swinnen Sensei

Sensei John Lambert

Sensei John Lambert (Scotland Chief Instructor) passed away peacefully after a long battle with cancer on June 28th, 2010.

John Lambert SenseiJohn Lambert Sensei

Sensei John Lambert began his Karate training in 1973 at the Fife institute in Scotland, the same hall his Dojo is still based in today.
He started his training under James Johnstone, along with Sensei Jim Flannigan. The two underwent brutal training, often coming away a bit worse for wear, but over time their abilities grew to the point where they became stronger and more advanced than their own instructor.
In 1979 the two travelled to Poole in England to train with World renowned Karate Master, Sensei Morio Higaonna. At this event, the first ever International Gasshuku, Higaonna Sensei founded the IOGKF. During this, Sensei John Lambert was made the chief instructor of IOGKF Scotland and he formed the Scottish Goju-ryu Karate-do Association (SGKA).
Sensei John Lambert is one of only a few persons who is an IOGKF founding chief instructor. He has been with the IOGKF since its humble beginnings and has supported Higaonna Sensei for over 31 years.
In 1991 his brother Sensei David Lambert snr, was promoted to chief instructor of IOGKF Australia. This is the only time in the IOGKF two members of the same family have both been chief instructors of countries in both the Northern and Southern hemisphere.
When his brother passed in 2000, he travelled to Australia with Higaonna Sensei and also attended the 2000 World Chief instructors Gasshuku in Cairns. In 2002 he attended and taught the Australian National Gasshuku.
Over his 31+ years in the IOGKF Sensei John Lambert travelled to England, Spain, Portugal, Sweden, Belgium, Italy, New Zealand, Australia, America, Japan, Okinawa, South Africa - just to name a few.
He is well known for his lively personality and cheeky wit, along with being the IOGKF’s favourite singer.
Sensei John also committed much of his time to the Olympiad program, where he would often travel abroad with local sportsmen & women as a mentor and coach, when they competed against opponents from other countries.
He was an avid family man being married to Sandra for over 30 years and fathering two beautiful children, Pauline and Iain – who are now both grown up.
Along with being Chief instructor of IOGKF Scotland and president of the SGKA, he became quite a support to many instructors of IOGKF Australia. To this day he still remains chief advisor to his brother’s Dojo in Goulburn, NSW, where his nephew still continues to teach as its head instructor.
He has many IOGKF friends around the World who all acknowledge him as a great person and a good Karate-ka


Letter of condolence from IOGKF Belgium

Dear Lambert family and friends,

I would like to express my condolences on behalf of myself, my wife Mieke and all the Belgian IOGKF members. We lost a good karateka but also a good friend. We loved talking with him, he knew how to put a smile on our face and we will cherish these memories. We know his family and all his friends will miss him dearly but he will never be forgotten.
Thank you Sensei John for being a friend.

Patrick Curinckx
IOGKF Belgium Chief Instructor

Sensei Bernard Cousin

Bernard Cousin SenseiHij werd geboren op 7 juni 1947. Sensei Bernard Cousin (7e Dan) ontdekt karate in 1966, hij was toen 19 jaar oud. In die tijd had M.Battaglia, een judo leraar, een kamer gehuurd om in te trainen, ze zouden elke zaterdag samen komen in Parijs. Een jaar later en om professionele redenen verhuisde Sensei Bernard Cousin naar Parijs, waar hij dan in staat was om te trainen in zijn eigen vrije tijd.
Hoang Nam Sensei leerde hem de basisprincipes van het Shotokan Karate en Sensei Bernard werd Shodan in 1970. In 1974 ontdekte hij het Okinawa Goju-Ryu. In 1976 verbleef hij voor een maand in Naha, Okinawa en trainde met Meester Eiichi Miyazato van de Jundokan, een directe leerling van de grondlegger Chojun Miyagi. Het was hier dat hij de reeds beroemde Master Morio Higaonna ontmoet.
In 1980 werd hij lid van IOGKF en in datzelfde jaar richtte hij de Franse Federatie (AFKGO) op. Higaonna Sensei erkende hem als Chief Instructor in 1984.
In 1994 op een Chief Instructor Gasshuku in Amerika werd hij benoemd tot Shihan.
Naast Karate was zijn familie erg belangrijk voor hem. Hij was gehuwd met Brigitte  en had twee dochters, Margot and Charlotte, en twee kleinkinderen, Leyina en Adem.
Sensei Bernard Cousin overleed in 2012.


Letter of condolence from IOGKF Belgium

Dear Mrs Cousin,

I’m sorry to give you our condolences in English but my French is not that good.
We are very sorry to hear about the passing away of Bernard Sensei. This is a great loss for his family and friends. Bakkies Sensei was in Belgium last week and he told us about Bernard Sensei being sick. The message of his death is however a great shock. We lost a good karateka but also a good friend.  We loved talking with him and we will cherish these memories. We know his family and all his friends will miss him dearly but he will never be forgotten. He will be out of sight but never out of our mind.

We want to express our true condolences to all of you.

Your husband is out of sight but not out of mind.
You will remember him, in a thousand winds that blow,
in the diamond glints on snow,
in the sunlight on the ripened grain,
in the gentle morning rain.
He will be the soft star that shines at night!
Say not in grief that he is no more, but say in thankfulness that he was.

Patrick and Mieke Curinckx
And all Belgian IOGKF members

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