Larry Hartsell...

Discussion in 'JKD-Kali' started by Ron Kosakowski, Apr 14, 2008.

  1. Ron Kosakowski

    Ron Kosakowski New Member

    Hi folks! I thought you all would appreciate this video they did on Larry Hartsell at my school.

    I miss the man and I think of him every single day. I have been with him for just over 20 years (since we were both young fellers)

    I really liked his humbleness to learn grappling, Kali or whatever he found interesting and he dove right into it full time and train hard. That says a lot for a man who has been in martial arts since the early 50's. Most at that point look down on you thinking they know much more. He did but that never stopped him from continuing his MA education.

    I hope you like the video. The people did a good job with it.
  2. harold

    harold New Member

    Great video. He certainly lived a philosophy of martial arts which is:
    You never stop learning or being a student.
  3. arnisador

    arnisador Active Member

    That's great! He was a legend.
  4. Ron Kosakowski

    Ron Kosakowski New Member

    Yah, I feel like his name is dyingout there in the MA world. He was quiet during his life and now his death is being kept quiet. There should be some sort of documentory or something done to keep his good name and all he accomplished alive. Bruce Lee's name was kept alive and still going strong. Personally, outside of movies, Larry Hartsell accomplished more than Bruce did. Maybe if Bruce Lee did not die at such an early age, I would not be able to say that. But Larry has some serious war stories even going back to his Vietnam days. His story would be rather interesting if someone were to put together such a project.
  5. Chris Wiggins

    Chris Wiggins New Member

    Nice video Ron. I got a chance to go to one of Sifu Hartsell's seminars many years ago. He embodied "talk softly, but carry a big stick". In fact, it was f'ing axe handles if I remember correctly.
    Secondly, was that pic of you and Willie from Puerta Galera? The only thing I remember about that guy was (insert Scottish accent) "I pulled my glute!"
  6. Ron Kosakowski

    Ron Kosakowski New Member

    Yes, that was Willie. Where did you see that picture?
  7. JunFanFighter

    JunFanFighter New Member

    Thanks for posting that video Ron, I was fortunate enough to attend one of Sifu Larry's seminars while I was training at the Kali academy here and I can tell you his memory and legend will never die out here in the Midwest. Peace
  8. Imua Kuntao

    Imua Kuntao New Member

    I have seen pictures of the summer trainning camps under Bob Ward with Barry Perrino, also Chai Sirisuite, and others, Guru Inosanto. Yes they did a lot of hand work trapping and passing to come off the line. Dallas wasn't the only team to do this, The Pittsburg steelers among others. Randy White had a powerful kick. I have heard many stories about Sifu Hartsell,
    but he will be remebered as a positive instructor in the martial arts.
  9. Ron Kosakowski

    Ron Kosakowski New Member

    Its good to see his name live on. He was quiet and I have always been afraid of his name dying out after his death. He did accomplish a lot. I hope someone puts out a book about his life. It would really be interesting. He is the real pioneer of grappling and more credit is given to the Gracie family for that than to Larry Hartsell.
  10. wesbennett100

    wesbennett100 New Member

    Re Hartsell

    Great video Ron... well done. Made me tear up. Sure do miss the guy too. Stay strong bro... God bless
    -wes bennett
  11. Guro Dave Gould



    Hello there, I hope that all is well with you. I read your post and just wanted to make a quick comment about sifu Larry.

    You don`t have to worry about his name dying out as he lived his life dedicated to what he loved most and that was the Martial Arts. He left deep footprints and you will see his influence left on those who trained with him for years to come. His legacy will survive much like he spent his life, in quiet admiration of those closest to him. He spoke his feelings on the ground and everyone who accompanied him there knows how effective he was.

    As most of you know after Edgar Sulite passed away I continued Larry in his training to further him in Lameco Eskrima at his request. I as well as many who knew him well could tell you a thousand memorable stories about our experiences with him. One event comes to mind that is the epitomy of who Larry was as a person, a fighter and a teacher.

    We were in Larrys garage in Marina Del Rey and I had just finished working him out on certain aspects of the Double stick curriculum in Lameco. A first time student had flown into train with him and was waiting out side until Larry and I were through. As I went inside the apartment to get some water the student was allowed in the Garage and he and Larry were talking. While I was in the Kitchen with Debra we heard a loud thump that made whole apartment shake. We go down stairs into the garage and Larry had almost put the poor guy through the wall and Larry was calmly saying to him: "do you want to fight or do you want to train?" I guess that instead of training the material that larry wanted to work him on the guy only wanted to prove to Larry that he could counter him and Larry took care of that right away. After seeing that Larry was like a bull dozer he decided that he wanted to train and the two continued their training as if nothing had happened until the student left a few hours later.

    Larry Hartsell was very soft spoken but when he spoke he meant what he said and he was indifferent to training, playing, sparrring or fighting, what ever the situation required he was more than willing to meet the demand. I remember when he still had his house in Culver City he always seemed happiest when Eric paulson would drop by and the two would spend hours in the back yard on the ground working things through. Often after I would finish working him out in Lameco I would hangout for hours and just watch him and Eric enjoy each others company.

    Larry Hartsell was one of a kind and someone very loyal to his teachers. Both Sigung Bruce Lee and Guro Dan Inosanto were extremely fortunate to have him as a student and friend because he was profoundly loyal to both until the day that he passed on. As long as those closest to him keep his memories he will live on for years to come. I miss him too...

    Go well, ciao.

    Guro Dave Gould.
    Last edited: Apr 27, 2008
  12. Ron Kosakowski

    Ron Kosakowski New Member

    Dave...that was a great story. I got a good laugh hearing that. Thank you for sharing it with us.

    He did speak highly of you by the way. I hope we can get together some day!
  13. Marvin Diem

    Marvin Diem New Member

    Larry was a wonderful person! I remember the last time I stayed in Marina Del Rey, those of you that know Larry, knew he had a fondness for a good bottle of wine, and we enjoyed a few of them the last time I stayed at his place , anyway there was a small earthquake and I jumped out of bed all in a panic because of the shock waves and Larry says " oh thats just a baby, go on back to bed" he was always so mellow.
  14. Ron Kosakowski

    Ron Kosakowski New Member

    heheheh...I had my first earth quake experience at Larry's house also. I had no idea of what that was being from the east coast. They thought of it as nothing. To me, I felt like something serious had happened. I don't think I can get used to earth quakes. Funny how people in CA think nothing of them.
  15. kuntaokali

    kuntaokali New Member

    I was fortunate to have been there that day of taping, and also a number of other seminars. Larry always had way of showing how to really fight, and not just do drills.
    As Ron already said he didn't get enough respect for his contribution to the grappling world.
    I personally always looked forward to his kali. Again not just drilling, but something that could be used in real combat.
    I may not have had the personal instruction that some have had, but during the seven years of training with him, I've seen a man that loved and respected Martial Arts, and Martial Artists, no matter where they were from or how experienced they were.
    Sifu Hartsell will live on in both my memories and my instruction for as long as I'm a Martial Artist. And I'm hoping thats a very very long time.:)

    Frank Summa
  16. Ron Kosakowski

    Ron Kosakowski New Member

    That was the day Sifu Larry presented me with my Senior Full instructorship certification. It was a proud day for me. I think of him every day.

    Little by little, I am setting up pictures I took of Sifu Larry Hartsell. I am putting together a mewmorial section on my website with picture i took of him that go as far back as the 80's when I originally met and started working with him in seminars and training camps.

    3 People from my school including Sifu Larry died of cancer. All of which have been around the school for a long time. I hope they come up with a cure soon. The sufferring they all went through is not good at all!

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