Jhoon Goo Rhee

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Jhoon Goo Rhee
Born (1932-01-07)January 7, 1932
Asan, Japanese Korea
Died April 30, 2018(2018-04-30) (aged 86)
Arlington, Virginia, U.S.
Other names Jhoon Rhee
Residence United States
Style Taekwondo, Chung Do Kwan
Teacher(s) Nam Tae Hi
Rank 10th dan taekwondo (posthumously)
Notable students Allen R. Steen
Website http://jhoonrheetkd.com/
Jhoon Goo Rhee
Hangul 이준구
Hanja 李俊九[1]
Revised Romanization Yi Jun-gu
McCune–Reischauer Yi Chun'gu

Jhoon Goo Rhee (January 7, 1932 – April 30, 2018), commonly known as Jhoon Rhee, was a South Korean master of taekwondo who was widely recognized as the 'Father of American Taekwondo' for introducing this martial art to the United States of America since arriving in the 1950s.[2][3] He was ranked 10th dan.[3]

Rhee was born on January 7, 1932, in Korea, during the period of Japanese occupation.[4] He began training in the martial arts at the age of 13 (1945), without his father's knowledge.[5] Rhee received martial art training under Nam Tae Hi and graduated from the Chung Do Kwan.[6] (How it is that he trained under Nam Tae Hi when Nam only began his own training in 1946 is unknown.) During the 1960s, Rhee befriended Bruce Lee—a relationship from which they both benefited as martial artists.[7] He opened his first U.S. based studio in 1962 in Washington, DC, and over time expanded to 11 studios in the DC Metro area.[8]

In 1973, Rhee made his only martial arts movie, titled When Taekwondo Strikes.[citation needed]

In the mid-1980s, Rhee operated a network of 11 martial arts studios across the Washington D.C. region.[9] Rhee was well known in the Washington, D.C. area for a television commercial that has a jingle by Nils Lofgren and features Rhee's daughter uttering the catch phrase, "Nobody bothers me," followed by his son saying "Nobody bothers me, either."[10] In 2000, Rhee was the only Korean-American named amongst the 203 most recognized immigrants to the country by the National Immigrant Forum and the Immigration and Naturalization Services.[2]

Rhee was inducted into the Taekwondo Hall of Fame in 2007,[11] and he is listed as both the 'Pioneer of American Taekwondo' and the 'Pioneer of Taekwon-Do in Russia' there.[12] Rhee is listed as a pioneer in the USA (1950s, 1960s, and 1970s) in Chang Keun Choi's list of taekwondo pioneers.[13]

Rhee died on April 30, 2018 in Arlington, Virginia at the age of 86.[8][14]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ 조성식 [Jo Seongsik] (2006-08-14), "5세에 송판 깨는 美 태권도 황제 이준구: "내 주먹은 바람, 내가 인정한 유일한 고수는 '싸움꾼' 이소룡"", Donga Ilbo Magazine, retrieved 2011-10-08 
  2. ^ a b Grand Master Jhoon Rhee returns home to serve as Youngsan Univ.'s Chair Professor The Seoul Times, September 2004. Retrieved on 28 July 2007.
  3. ^ a b Kang, S.-W. (2008): Taekwondo grandmaster lectures at Yonsei University The Korea Times (10 January 2008). Retrieved on 26 January 2010.
  4. ^ Zia, Helen (1995). Notable Asian Americans. United States: Gale Group. p. 326. ISBN 0810396238. 
  5. ^ JhoonRhee.com: Philosophy Archived 2011-07-13 at the Wayback Machine. Retrieved on 29 January 2010.
  6. ^ Kang, W. S., and Lee, K. M. (1999): The Modern History of TaeKwonDo Retrieved on 14 October 2007.
  7. ^ Nilsson, Thomas (May 1996). "With Bruce Lee: Taekwondo Pioneer Jhoon Rhee Recounts His 10-Year Friendship With the "Dragon"". Black Belt Magazine. 34 (5): 39–43. Retrieved 2009-11-19. 
  8. ^ a b "Grandmaster Jhoon Rhee, 'father of American taekwondo,' dies at 86". New York Daily News. Associated Press. 30 April 2018. Retrieved 1 May 2018. 
  9. ^ Smith, Harrison (May 1, 2018), "Jhoon Rhee, who helped popularize taekwondo in the United States, dies at 86", The Washington Post 
  10. ^ Richards, Chris (2012-02-17). "The surprising, rock source behind D.C.'s 'Nobody bothers me' TV jingle". Washington Post. Retrieved 2018-04-30. 
  11. ^ Taekwondo Hall of Fame 2007 Banquet Retrieved on 12 January 2008. (Although the reference's address contains "2006," the event was actually held in 2007.)
  12. ^ Taekwondo Hall of Fame Retrieved on 12 January 2008.
  13. ^ Choi, C. K. (2007): Tae Kwon Do Pioneers Archived 2008-03-12 at the Wayback Machine. Retrieved on 15 March 2008.
  14. ^ Wright, Kimberly L. "Man credited with popularizing Taekwondo in US dies". Fox 19. Retrieved 30 April 2018. 

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