Haeng Ung Lee

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Haeng Ung Lee
Born(1936-07-20)July 20, 1936
DiedOctober 5, 2000(2000-10-05) (aged 64)
Little Rock, Arkansas
StyleSongahm Taekwondo
Haeng Ung Lee
Revised RomanizationYi Haeng-ung
McCune–ReischauerYi Haeng'ung

Haeng Ung ("H.U.") Lee (July 20, 1936 – October 5, 2000) was the co-founder and first Grand Master of the American Taekwondo Association.


Lee was born in Manchukuo (now northeast China) after his family had left Korea, returning after World War II. From 1956 to 1959, Lee taught taekwondo to members of the Republic of Korea military. He started a commercial school to teach civilians in 1959. He later opened a school near a U.S. Air Force base, where he instructed and befriended an American serviceman, Richard Reed, who in 1962 sponsored Lee's emigration to the United States.

Lee moved to Omaha, Nebraska, where in 1969 he co-founded the American Taekwondo Association.[1] Omaha remained the organization's headquarters until Lee relocated it to Little Rock, Arkansas in 1977. In 1990, the ATA Master's Council awarded Lee the rank of 9th degree black belt and the title of "Grand Master"

On October 5, 2000, Lee died of cancer.[2] Lee's brother Soon Ho was later promoted to 9th degree Grand Master. H.U. Lee's widow, Sun C. Lee, received her late husband's shares in the company and became the new chairman of the board of the ATA. H.U. Lee was posthumously promoted to 10th degree black belt, and awarded the title "Eternal Grand Master". He is the first ever to attain this rank in the ATA. Master Lee has also been inducted into the Arkansas Sports Hall of Fame.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b 李東昱 [Yi Dong-uk] (1999-11-10), "이행웅 - 리틀록의 태권도 왕 李幸雄 ATA(American Taekwondo Association) 회장 [Lee Haeng-ung: King of Taekwondo in Little Rock, American Taekwondo Association president]", Chosun Ilbo, retrieved 2011-09-29
  2. ^ "'솔직하고 소박한', 가까이서 본 이행웅", Mookas News, 2000-10-06, retrieved 2011-09-28

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