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Siu Nim Tau Certified First Degree Black Sash
Dane's martial arts career began at the YMCA in Grundy, Virginia while in the 7th grade when one of his friends convinced him that they could be ninja's. Like many kids during the 1980's he was heavily influenced by the karate and ninja movies and TV shows of the time. His parents felt that the martial arts would be good for him (he just wanted to be a ninja!) so he enrolled in Okinawan Kempo Karate at the Grundy, VA YMCA under Sensei Esther Dye, student of Master Frankie McCoy. He earned his green belt before graduating high school and joined the US Navy. After basic training and specialty school, he was assigned to the US Pacific Fleet and stationed on the island of Guam. Wishing to resume martial arts training, he found the Guam Kyokushinkai and began training under Shihan Joseph Tedtaotao on his off-duty hours. While assigned to the US Pacific Fleet he visited most of the major Asian port cities along the western Pacific Ocean, the Indian Ocean, and the Persian Gulf. His travels with the Navy took him throughout the Middle East, India, SE Asia, and East Africa. His studies were interrupted by an extended deployment to the Persian Gulf during Operation Desert Shield and Operation Desert Storm. After an honorable discharge from the Navy he had a string of short-term martial arts training experiences while attending college. He has worked in new home construction, bartending, has been a waiter, a home painter, and an assembly line painter for a major tractor manufacturer. After graduating with a degree in music education he was employed as an assistant band director and percussion instructor in the the Georgia public schools of suburban Atlanta. He began a body-building program and underwent a security training course with the Atlanta Police Department and also worked part-time as a nightclub security guard and "bouncer."
After a few years he again returned to college to pursue the medical field and, after graduating, he accepted a job offer in Cincinnati. In 2016 he made the life-changing decision to resume martial arts training and signed up for a free class at Meng's Martial Arts of Cincinnati. At the time Master Lambert was 79, and after seeing him in action, Dane famously stated "Sifu, I want to be like you when I grow up!" Dane has since made a lifelong commitment to his Sifu, the Art, and the System and a commitment to the "kung fu lifestyle." He enjoys the deeper aspects of Shaolin martial arts, especially the Chan focus on calming oneself and "being in the moment." He has lost nearly 100 pounds since beginning a dedicated fitness regimen, and 65lbs since beginning Shaolin Wing Chun. He attributes this to the "kung fu lifestyle."
Under Master Lambert's tutelage, Dane has competed in several local tournaments, earning Gold, Silver, and Bronze medals in forms and sparring, and in 2019 he competed in The Arnold Schwarzenegger "Battle of Columbus" martial arts tournament, and the Tiger Dragon Kung Fu Warrior Championship in Dayton, at an event arranged by Grandmaster Meng.
In November 2019 he tested before his Sifu, Master Lambert and his Sigung, Grand Master Meng, and earned his First Degree Black Sash. He is an Assistant Instructor at Meng's Martial Arts of Cincinnati and enjoys teaching new students and training with his kung fu family. As a Lohan Black Sash he has began delving deeper into the art of Shaolin Wing Chun, discovering its mysteries and nuances, in order to pass the Art down to new generations.
Professionally, he is a privately employed surgeon's assistant in a Cincinnati-based gynecological oncology practice and specializes in robotic minimally invasive surgery. He enjoys spending time with his family, his dachshund, and renovating his 1880's-era Victorian home and fancies himself a "connoisseur of fine bourbons, and low-slung earth dogs." He participates in Viking Era historical re-enactments and plays on his Norse heritage as "Kveldulf, The Kung Fu Viking" in social media and beardcare branding. He plans to open his own school in the near future with the blessings of his Sifu and Sigung.
On Sunday, September 20, 2020 Sifu Dane was presented his certification as a Siu Nim Tau level instructor in the Shaolin Wing Chun Kung Fu system by Grandmaster Benny Meng and Master John Lambert at Meng's Martial Arts World Headquarters in Dayton, Ohio.
Dane competed in the Traditional Wing Chun Forms division of the 2019 Battle of Columbus with Biu Ji, the third Wing Chun Form.
Dane competed in the Adult Forms division in the Master Anthony Price All-Star Karate Nationals with "Yi Duan Changquan" Long Fist Form with which he won a Gold Medal and also bringing home a Silver Medal in adult sparring.
Dane competed in Adult Traditional Wing Chun Forms at the 2019 Tiger Dragon Kung Fu Warrior Championship at the Miami Valley Sports Festival in Dayton, OH. He took home the Silver Medal, losing the Gold to his kung fu brother and fellow Meng's Martial Arts of Cincinnati student, Joshua Bärfelz.