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In Memory of Sr. Grandmaster Edmund K. Parker

In Memory of Senior Grandmaster Edmund K. Parker – Martial Arts in Pasadena, California

December 15th will mark the 29th anniversary of Senior Grandmaster Edmund K. Parker’s passing.  Mr. Parker opened up the first Martial Arts studio in Pasadena, California in 1956.  The original sign from his studio in Pasadena has remained as a historical monument and serves as a reminder of the profound influence he has had in the martial arts world.

Mr. Parker’s influence on Martial Arts in the United States cannot be overstated.  He is the founder and creator of the American Kenpo Karate system.  Despite his passing, his work and art continue to live on through his extensive publications, listed below:

  • 1960, Kenpo Karate: Law of the Fist and the Empty Hand. Delsby Publications  1963, Secrets of Chinese Karate. Prentice-Hall
  • 1975, Ed Parker’s Guide to the Nunchaku
  • 1975, Ed Parker’s Kenpo Karate Accumulative Journal. International Kenpo Karate Association.
  • 1978, Inside Elvis. Rampart House
  • 1982, Ed Parker’s Infinite Insights into Kenpo, Vol. 1: Mental Stimulation. Delsby Publications
  • 1983, Ed Parker’s Infinite Insights into Kenpo, Vol. 2: Physical Analyzation I. Delsby Publications
  • 1985, Ed Parker’s Infinite Insights into Kenpo, Vol. 3: Physical Analyzation II. Delsby Publications
  • 1986, Ed Parker’s Infinite Insights Into Kenpo, Vol. 4: Mental and Physical Constituents. Delsby Publications
  • 1987, Ed Parker’s Infinite Insights Into Kenpo: Vol. 5: Mental and Physical Applications. Delsby Publications
  • 1988, The Woman’s Guide to Self Defense
  • 1988, The Zen of Kenpo. Delsby Publications
  • 1992, Ed Parker’s Encyclopedia of Kenpo. Delsby Publications

In addition to publications, Mr. Parker taught many well-known kenpoists, such as Bob White, HukPlanas, Larry Tatum, Frank Trejo, Ron Chapel, Bob White, Al Tracy, Brian Hawkins, Jeff Speakman, Scott Higgins, Brian Cooper, and Rick Jeffcoat, whose studio is named American Kenpo Karate. These well-known kenpoists have helped to teach and disseminate the art to thousands of students throughout the globe, thus ensuring Mr. Parker’s art and legacy lives on.

Mr. Parker also popularized the art through his roles in Hollywood Films, such as Revenge of the Pink Panther (1978), Kill the Golden Goose (1978), and Curse of the Pink Panther (1983), to name a few. He also taught notable actors and performers such as Elvis Presley, Robert Wagner, Robert Culp, Robert Conrad, George Hamilton, Warren Beatty, and others.

The movie clip below features Mr. Parker as the character Mr. Chong in Revenge of the Pink Panther

….and some more fun!

An excerpt of Mr. Parker from Kill the Golden Goose is shown below:

On December 15, we salute and show gratitude to Senior Grandmaster Edmund K. Parker for introducing martial arts to Pasadena, California, and indeed the world.