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Mills Crenshaw
The Friend I Knew
Fri Nov 22, 2002 19:37

When Ed Parker died, the world lost one of the most creative and prolific minds of his generation. His genius extended far beyond the martial arts. His inquisitive mind relentlessly probed the relationship between the most mundane human tools and tasks and how they could be employed in the art of self preservation.

To Ed, a common dinner setting represented a ďdeliciousĒ (sorry about the pun) array of potential weapons. He selected the least obvious, the plate, as an assassinís weapon for a movie project. In one scene, he broke the plate on the victimís forehead then, in a continuous motion, used the jagged edges to slash both jugular veins. It was both inventive and effective.

Of greater import, he often applied strategic combat theory to human relationships. He was capable of disarming a potential adversary with a word, a glance, a sudden turn of his head or a fierce smile that was accompanied with a scowl and hooded eyes.

The Ed Parker the public did not know, was a man of stature. He was a man of solid integrity who sought the same from those with whom he came in contact. Sadly, he was often disappointed by many of those who pretended to be his friends. He allowed them to carry on their pretense, and said nothing, to them or about them, that would disclose his bitter disappointment at their duplicity.

Ed was a man of deep faith and firm conviction. He lived what he believed, but would never impose his beliefs on others. He shared those inner convictions with only a trusted few. One of those was Elvis Presley. Edís insights into the primary questions of life, and death, had a tempering effect on his friend. Sadly, the pressures and foibles of public life overwhelmed Elvis with tragic results.

The first time I ever saw Ed parker was in the winter of 1954. I was a green freshman at BYU, and the events of that night changed my life. There were several thousand people gatheredÖ

Sorry, this is already too long. Perhaps another time. Iíll just close by saying, this was my friend, I miss him.

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