Jack Scott- United Karate- Cookeville, Tennessee
Around 1988, I arrived at my inlaws who had relocated to Cookeville from New Jersey. We had brought my four year old son there to visit his grandparents and spend some quality family time. After being there a few days I casually leafed through the yellow pages to see what karate schools were around. My eyes landed on Jack Scotts United Karate Studio and I decided to call.
I explained I was visiting family and asked if I could come down and watch some karate classes. Mr. Scott said it was not a good night to come down but the next night would be better. Of course that prompted me to go down and see why I could not watch. Well he received me with open arms and let me watch for several hours. We talked for a long time and then he asked if I would like to take a class the next night. I responded I would like to but had not brought my uniform. He loaned me a uniform and Black Belt and we had only just met!
The next night I showed up early and began to warm up and introduce myself to his students. Class started and we swung into a very dynamic warmup and did many, many,many kicks. The class ran on for a few hours and then we took a break to spar, and yes he loaned me sparring gear. I sparred all the students and then of course my new friend Jack. Wow what a workout!
Then when I though we were all done he said, "Lets you and I fight some full contact", so of course we went several more rounds. It was a tremendous workout. Mr. Scott was in shape and could really fight and bang. Later when I was in the locker room changing, one of the red belts asked if I were coming back the next night. I told him I was flying back to Connecticut and was unable. He let out a big WHOO Hoo! Great he says, That is the hardest training session we ever had! I couldn't take another clas like that tomorrow.
It was the start of a glorious friendship. The following two years I attended his tournament and had a blast. I met many of the UKS members included the senior Master Ben Kiker, Jesse Thorton, James Hobby and mitzi Tyler, all well known competitors who I saw frequently on the national competition circuit.
A few years went by and we had lost touch. One of my students was attending a martial arts business seminar by Hartford and she told me he had bumped into Jack Scott and he told her of our friendship. The next night we met for dinner and we just picked up where we left off.
I stayed in touch with him and knew he had some health challenges but had been doing better. Since he had moved locations after my last visit he sent me this video tour of his new school and I know he was so proud of the school and students. Martial arts was his passion.
A few years later Jack lost his fight against cancer and we lost one of the greatest martial artists, teachers, and men I have ever known. After I found out he died I wrote a letter the the local Cookeville newspaper teling what a loss I had felt. His wife sent me a nice letter along with a school t shirt. I sent her a copy of this video. She didn't even know he had made it for me.
I hope many of his students will enjoy the energy of this great man and the pride he took in this journey as a Karate teacher.
Mike Bogdanski, Jack Scotts friend.