We were pleased and surprised yesterday to welcome two special visitors to the dojo. Ariff Mehter Sensei, 6th dan and USAF Shihan, and his wife, Angela Lotito-Mehter, 2nd dan, dropped by during Jose’s class. They were in town on vacation and were visiting the local sights. We were thrilled to make their list!
Mehter Sensei began his study of Aikido in 1962 in Myanma (Burma) under U. Thaung Din, who was a senior student of Murashige Sensei, one of the first instructors O-Sensei sent outside of Japan to teach Aikido.
In 1968 Mehter Sensei moved to New York where he became a student of Kanai and Yamada Sensei. He founded Aikido of Central New York in 1970, which is still headed by his brother, Yousuf Mehter.
In 1978 Mehter Sensei moved to Ashland, Kentucky, where he started the KYOWVA Aikikai, now headed by Tom Berry. Then in 1989, he moved to Louisville, where he started the Kentuckiana Aikikai, currently overseen by Pat Hardesty.
In 1998 he began teaching at Aikido of Cincinnati, one of the largest Aikido dojos in the country.
We hope to see you again, Sensei!