2nd Degree Black Belt – Senpai (先輩)
John Flory was born and raised in Canton, Ohio until the age of 9, when he moved to Mt. Juliet, Tennessee. Upon moving in with his grandparents in Tennessee, John was eager to join different clubs and extra-curricular activities. After seeing a flyer posted by one of the instructors at David Deaton Karate Studios at his elementary school, he spoke with his grandparents about it. His sister was the one who originally wanted to join; however, they joined together. Immediately his eyes were captivated on the dojo; he wanted desperately to join and begin his journey as a karateka.
In August of 2009, John officially started his studies of the Wado-Ryu Karate style. That very night he watched the first Karate Kid movie and was determined to be just like Daniel-san. As months passed, John was eventually awarded his Blue Belt in which, at the same time, his grandparents signed him up for the Black Belt Club. Subsequently, John made a commitment to continue his training until reaching the rank of ShoDan (1st Degree Black), but he didn’t stop there.
After completing his successful journey to achieving his black belt, John was interested in becoming a S.W.A.T Instructor, a junior assistant of the main Sensei’s of the dojo. He involved himself with this program until he reached the rank of NiDan (2nd Degree Black), before taking a hiatus from karate to be a part of his school’s JROTC program. Coincidentally, David Deaton Karate tournaments were held at the high school John attended. Seeing some of his old friends, old teachers, and mentors during these tournaments helped him to recall all the amazing memories he made while studying karate.
Upon graduating high school in 2018, John was beyond excited to return to the world of martial arts, and practice, once again. Mr. Flory not only believes karate to be a fantastic way to maintain great physical shape, but also a lifestyle that helps create and develop key characteristics to becoming a better person. Discipline, respect, and honor of one’s self, as well as obedience, are just a few values Mr. Flory has learned and utilized within his everyday life, and in his words, “Wado-Ryu lives within me on the dojo floor, and in the outside world.” We are very glad to now have Senpai Flory as a full-time staff member.