The story of how an ordinary Oklahoma kid began his transformation into a martial arts champion.
In August 1958, 2 months after graduation, I enrolled in the US Air Force. Immediately after signing the documents, the command sent me to a training camp in Lacland, Texas. It was there that one guy from my hut asked my name. “Carlos? - He asked, - it sounds strange if you are not Hispanic. How will Carlos in English? Charles? Then we will call you Chuck. ” This nickname has remained with me forever, although my relatives still call me "Carlos".
For several months in the training camp, I ate, drank, walked, talked and slept militarily. I did not mind the harsh drill and training - they made me stronger and more confident. So much more confident that I asked for the hand of my girlfriend Dianna, and during the leave of leave we got married in the city of Torrance, California. At the ceremony I was wearing a uniform of the USAF. I was 18 and she was 17.But at the age of 19 I was forced to leave my wife: I was sent to Korea.
- Can I study tansudo while my collarbone is broken? - I asked.
“Yes,” said the teacher, “It will even speed healing, but you need to learn how to turn off the pain.”
He took me to the village of Osan to instructor Jay Chul Shin. He took me skeptically, because, as a rule, the Americans quickly abandoned classes, and now in front of him was an American with a broken collarbone.There were 20 people in the group, the majority were local, already with black belts! But the Koreans were not familiar with the psychology of learning, so I trained along with everyone using one hand, 5 hours a day from Monday to Saturday, while simultaneously serving at the base. The clavicle gradually healed, but I often could not fall asleep at night because of pain and aches all over my body from endless exercises and sparring.
In the third month of training, Mr. Shin organized a demonstration performance of the school in front of the villagers. Everything went well, and I performed relatively well, but at the end Mr. Shin folded 8 roof tiles one on top of another and pointed to me: “You! You break it! ”My heart beat frantically. Until now, I have not broken anything except my own clavicle. But I knew that if I showed cowardice, then Mr. Shin would lose face in the eyes of the villagers. Therefore, I bent over the tiles and aimed with two knuckles at the top of the pile, as we were taught. I took a deep breath and struck! But, while my fist flew down, I turned my wrist, and instead of large knuckles, small knuckles took a hit. I heard a terrible crash: the tiles broke, but my hand broke too.
Mr. Shin, however, was pleased. This is how the Korean way of learning works - through trial and error. By the end of service in the Air Force, I already had a black belt of the first level in tansudo and a brown belt of the third level in judo. And also was presented to the rank of pilot of the first rank.