Yoshisada Yonezuka

last updated 5 June 2017

Yoshisada Yonezuka

Yoshisada Yonezuka

Inducted 1993

Born in Japan, Mr. Yonezuka lived in the United Sates since 1960. A prominent member of the martial arts community, he founded the Cranford Judo and Karate Center 50 years ago. In 1988, and again in 1992, Mr. Yonezuka was the head coach of the U.S. Olympic Judo Team. He was a graduate of Nihon University, and had been an officer in many Judo organizations.

Founder of Cranford Judo and Karate Center amd Olympic coach, Yoshisada Yonezuka, of Cranford, N.J., passed away Saturday, Oct. 18, 2014, at the age of 77.

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From the archive, a cutting from Pacific Stars and Stripes

Remembershing Yoshisada Yonezuka Sensei

by Vaughn Imada on Tuesday, October 21st, 2014

Founder of Cranford Judo and Karate Center amd Olympic coach, Yoshisada Yonezuka, 77, of Cranford, N.J., passed away Saturday, Oct. 18, 2014, at Hackensack University Medical Center.

Friends are invited to visit from 3 to 7 p.m. on Tuesday at the Dooley Funeral Home, 218 North Ave. West in Cranford, N.J.

Born in Japan, Mr. Yonezuka lived in the United Sates since 1960. A prominent member of the martial arts community, he founded the Cranford Judo and Karate Center 50 years ago. In 1988, and again in 1992, Mr. Yonezuka was the head coach of the U.S. Olympic Judo Team. He was a graduate of Nihon University, and had been an officer in many Judo organizations.

Surviving are a son, Nicolas Yonezuka (Denise); a daughter, Natacha Yonezuka-Gullo (Geoffrey); four beloved grandchildren, Sop hia, Nicolas, Jack, and Kenji; two sisters, Teruko and Nabuko; two brothers, Yoshi and Masato; and his former wife, Anastasia Yonezuka.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Yoshisada Yonezuka Memorial Fund, 107 South Ave., Cranford, N.J. 07016.

See more about Yoshisada Yonezuka – an obituary

In 2002 the fiftieth anniversary was celebrated with a book of USJF history. In it were a number of biographies. including this:

YOSHISADA YONEZUKA

Hudson Yudanshakai

Yoshisada Yonezuka

Born May 19. 1937 Aomorikcn Kitalsuguru·gun, Nakasato

Kodokan JUDO-8th Dan

Kenkokan KARATE-8th Dan

Kokusai SUMO Rcnmei-5lh Dan

EDUCATION

Nakasalo machi Takeda Shogakko and Chugakko

Aomari konritsu Goshogawara High School

Nihon University, Bachelor degree of Business Economics

SPORTS

    • Sumo, Track & Field, and Judo up to High School.
    • Judo and Karate at Nihon University.
    • Sumo team captain in shogakko and chugakko. Won many tcam and individual championships in Aomariken area.
    • Judo team captain in high school. Won many individual and first and last Aomorikcn high sl.:hoo!team championship in 1957.
    • Nihon University As co·captain led judo team La win Lhc Tokyo Collegiate Championship in 1959.
    • 1959 won the All Northern Japan Judo Championship and qualified to compete in 1960 All Japan Judo Championship. which was to be held in May of 1960. However, could not compete in the Championship because of contract to teach Judo at Judo Inc. in New York City starting April I, 1960.
    • Arrived in New York March 30, 1960.
    • Taught at several different locations in New York City and appeared on television shows such as "Jack Paar Tonight Show", the "Mike Wallace Show", the "Zacherley Show". and "Channel 13 Education Program".

    • Gave demonstrations at the United Nations, New York World's Fair. New York AthleLic Club, Manhattan Center, New York National Gird. ctc.
    • 1962 became instructor at the West Point Military Academy.
    • Started Judo Karate Center, Inc at the end of 1962 in New Jersey.
    • Hired by US Air Force Team to coach and preparation for 1964 Tokyo Olympics.
    • Instructor at New Jersey Institute of Tcchnology.
    • Competed officially and unofficially in many different types of matches against Wrestlers, Boxers. and Jujitsu-ka. In all of the competitions never lost a match in USA.
    • Won the United States Master Judo Championship seven years consecutively in the 209-pound division.
    • Produced many national champions of all age groups.
    • Produced 6 Olympians from the Judo Karate Center, Inc.
    • 2 Olympic Bronze medals (1976 Montreal - Heavyweight. Allen Coage, Judo: 1988 Seoul - 71 kg. Mike Swain, Judo)
    • 2 World Champions (1987 Essen Germany 71 kg Mike Swain, Judo: 1995 Tokyo Japan Open weight Emanual Yarbrough, Sumo)

SERVED AS HEAD COACH OF U.S.A.TEAM

      Judo 1983 World Championship in Moscow 1985 World Championship in Seoul 1987 World Championship in Essen 1988 Olympic Games in Seoul 1991 Pan Amercan Games in Cubs 1992 Olympic Games in Barcelona Sumo 1993 through 1998 World Championship in Ryogoku Kokugikan Tokyo 1999 World Championship in Riesa. Germany 2000 World Championship in Sao Paulo, Brazil

SERVED AS PRESIDENT

President of United States Judo Federation (2 terms 1988-1992)

President of Hudson (NY-NJ) Judo Yudanshakai (1979 to Present)

President of American Juyukai (1964 to Present)

President ofNew Jersey Judo. Inc. (1982 to Present)

President of United Stales Sumo Federation (1996 to Present)

President of North America Sumo Union (1993 to 1998)

AWARDS RECEIVED

1960 Silver Cup for Outstanding Athlete from Nihon University Graduation

1982 Black Belt Magazine "Hall of Fame"

1991 New Jersey Institute of Technology Athletic "Hall of Fame"

1993 United Stmes Judo Federation "Hall of Fame"

1994 Intemational Sass's Martial Arts "Hall of Fame"

SPECIAL AWARD FOR CONTRIBUTION AND APPRECIATION

      1984 United States Judo Olympic Team

1986 West Point Military Academy

1989 Karate Int'l East Coast Pioneer Award

1991 National Collegiate Judo Association

1991 The Cable TV Network of New Jersey

1992 United States Judo Federation

1994 United States Judo Inc, Henry Stone Award

1995 New York Athletic Club

1996 United States Judo Inc.

1998 Member of tbe National Registry of Who's Who Publisher

AWARDS FROM JAPAN

1985 Nakasato-Machi Special Citizen Award

1990 Int'l Diffusion & Development Award From All Japan Judo Federation

1998 Aomori-Ken Governor's Award by Governor Kimura

1999 Aomori-Ken Taiiku Shinkokai Award