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About Nacogdoches Blackbelt Academy

    Master John Chu, a native of South Korea, brought Taekwondo to Nacogdoches, Texas in 1972. He started classes throughout East and West Texas. Master Chu taught the Moo duk kwan style of Taekwondo. However, he trained in HapKiDo and Judo as well. The Moo duk kwan style is one of the oldest martial arts developed in Korea and gets it's base from Shotokan Karate.
    Master Chu stood only five feet, five inches tall, but could leap in the air and kick the rim of a basketball goal. He was known to leap over a six foot obstacle and break a board with a flying side kick. As for cement blocks, he could break 7 with his head.
    Master Chu brought an instructor named Chris Poole, from Longview, to teach the Nacogdoches classes. Mr Poole trained notables such as Steve White, Steve Durr, and Mitch Spence. Mr. White and Mr. Durr taught Taekwondo at Sacred Heart Church. Mr. Spence taught Tae kwon do at Stephen F. Austin State University. However, Mr. Spence eventually moved from Nacogdoches and Mr. Durr took over the S.F.A. classes. Sadly, in April 1980 at the age of 37, Master Chu passed away. He was too young to be promoted to 7th degree (minimum age is 42 for that rank). However, upon hearing of Master Chu's death, the WTF promoted him, posthumously, to the rank of 8th degree black belt.
    In honor of Master Chu, Mr. White and other instructors from the East and West Texas schools decided to form the American Tae Kwon Do Moo Duk Kwan Federation. (some notables of the A.T.M.F. were Master Mike Maddox, Master Danny Maddox, Master Chuck White, Master John Mitchell, and Master Kenny Faires).
    Master Chu's schools, now under the leadership of Mr. Steve White, struggled without any Master Instructor. Mr. White decided to train in the W.T.F (World Taekwondo Federation) style of Tae kwon do and obtained his Master Instructor Certification. Under his leadership and instruction, Frank and Linda Gay earned their 4th Dan Instructor certifications. When Master White moved away, Mr. Gay took over his classes as the instructor. Mrs. Gay started teaching a children's Taekwondo class at Tanglewood School. Another one of Master White's students, Mr. Mitch Millers, started a class of his own and eventually received his 3rd Dan with the W.T.F. Mr. Gay promoted two other students to the rank of 3rd Dan, Mr. Russell Maness and Mr. Jimmy Myers. (Other notable students trained and promoted by Mr. Gay are Master Victor Galan, 5th Dan, Peggy Scott, 2nd Dan, Mr. James Perryman, 1st Dan, Mr. Dwayne Crow, 1st Dan, Mr. Gary Harris, 1st Dan, and Ms. Leslie Harris, 1st Dan). Mr. Spillers was moving away, so he offered his class to Mr. Maness, 3rd Dan and Mr. Perryman, 1st Dan.
    On October 28th, 1998, Nacogdoches Blackbelt Academy was begun by Mr. Maness and Mr. Perryman. A few years later, due to work and a busy sideline auto repair business, Mr. Perryman was unable to continue his teaching and training. At that point, Mr. Maness took over the school. With assistance from Mr. Gary Harris and his daughter, Ms. Leslie Harris, NBA continued. Mr. Maness later promoted Mr. Harris to 2nd Dan. Mr. Chris Stout, 1st Dan from Dallas, later assisted in teaching classes. Mr. Maness later promoted Mr. Stout to 2nd Dan. After taking a few years off from training due to surgery, Ms. Peggy Scott returned to her training, as did her husband, the late Mr. Steve Scott. Mr. Stout later moved due to military duty and Mr. and Mrs. Scott assumed more teaching time. The two were instrumental in assisting Mr. Maness with classes when it became necessary from him to have back surgery.
    In February 2005, Grandmaster Armando Garcia, from Austin, Texas, promoted Mr. Maness to 4th Dan. Later that year, Mr. Maness promoted Mr. and Ms. Harris to 2nd Dan. In March 2009, Master Garcia promoted Mr. Maness to 5th Dan Master Instructor.
    This is by no means a complete list of all the students of Master Chu, as well as the students of their students, but it is important to know at least this much concerning your school's long and proud history.