RIP Joe Lewis, father of American kickboxing

Friday, August 31, 2012

Martial arts legend and Pioneer Joe Lewis lost a long fight with brain cancer this morning in Virginia, surrounded by family and friends.

Dubbed the “Muhammad Ali” of sport karate, Joe Lewis won more titles in his 17-year fighting career than any other tournament fighter. Unsatisfied with the level of realism in karate, he went on to become the father of American kickboxing.

Lewis was born on March 7, 1944, in North Carolina. He eventually joined the Marines and was stationed in Okinawa. It was while he was there that 18-year-old Lewis began studying shorin-ryu karate under Eizo Shimabukuro, Seiyu Oyata, Chinsaku Kinjo and John Korab, receiving his black belt in seven months. He later went on to study with Bruce Lee, Sugar Ray Robinson, and other greats.

As a fighter, Lewis amassed other important firsts—first World Professional Karate Championships titleholder, first U.S. heavyweight kickboxing champion, and in 1974, the first Professional Karate Association heavyweight full-contact karate champion.

The Black Belt Hall of Fame inducted Joe Lewis as the 1974 Karate Player of the Year. Yet to Lewis, his greatest accolade was being chosen in 1983 by his peers as the “Greatest Karate Fighter of All Time.”

Funeral plans

Friday, September 7, 2012

Visitation with Family
Times:  7:00pm – 9:00pm
Location:  Funeral Home

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Times:  2:00pm
Location: Funeral Home for Eulogy.
After service, Joe Lewis will receive full military burial at Knightdale Baptist Cemetery.

Times:  7:00pm – 10:00pm
Location:  Hilton North Raleigh Midtown

Joe Lewis Memorial – Updated Information.

Funeral Home
L. Harold Poole Funeral Service and Crematory
944 Old Knight Road
Knightdale, NC 27545

Knightdale Baptist Cemetary
264 Mailman Road
Knightdale, NC 27545

September 7 – September 9, 2012

Raleigh / Durham, NC (RDU)

Hilton North Raleigh Midtown
(919) 872-2323