Sensei Vince Bueno began his study of martial arts with Sensei Ed Burgess in 1978 while attending Sierra College as a Building Construction Engineering student. The various martial arts offered at Sierra were Judo via Sensei Horrillo, Danzan Ryu Jujitsu via Sensei Burgess and Sensei Wight, Kenpo Karate and Arnis Escrima via Sensei Meyer. For several years the instructors at Sierra had been assembling one of the most eclectic martial arts programs ever offered at the junior college level. Their dream was to eventually offer a college level self-defense certification program in martial arts through the P.E. department. However, budget cuts for the fall of 1979 semester resulted in the temporary elimination of the Jujitsu and Escrima classes. To salvage years of work and preserve the overall concept of a certification program, they re-categorized all martial arts as “self-defense” P.E. classes beginning with the spring semester of 1980. This also allowed each instructor to continue to teach their specific discipline as a self-defense course that was based on the fundamentals of the parent disciplines; Judo, Jujitsu, Karate, and Escrima, that they renamed Kenju-Do. Furthermore, they founded the “Sierra College Martial Arts Club” to provide a source of funding for equipment, uniforms, patches, and certificates that was exempt from budget cuts. Vince was promoted to Shodan in 1981 and became the President of the Martial Arts club.
Inspired by Sensei Burgess, Vince set a personal goal of representing the United States in Judo at the 1984 Olympics in Los Angeles. While the qualifying process for Judo Olympic team selection was both difficult and extensive, it all began with a signed commitment that included a written test, USJA membership fee, and a sponsor’s recommendation. Vince maintained an intense training schedule that included Judo, Jujitsu, Escrima, and Wushu Kungfu. Strength and conditioning training were in addition to the martial arts classes.
Under the sponsorship of Sensei Burgess, Vince represented the Taihei Yukikan Dojo of Rocklin in a tournament with the Kodenkan Judo & Jujitsu Group of San Francisco that was under the direction of Professor James Musselman. Unfortunately, after winning two matches by ippon with both Tani-Otoshi and Kane-Sute, a failed attempt at Hane-Maki-komi against Ivan Mackillop resulted in a lateral tear in his trapezius during mat work. While the injury ended Vince’s Olympic dream, he was eventually prompted to Sandan in 1987 and continued teach at The Academy of Arts, La Sierra Community Center, and Sierra College until starting a new career in law enforcement in 1988. Retiring in 2013 at the rank of Captain, Vince attributes much of his success to the Danzan Ryu philosophy of striving for greater awareness and perfection of personal character.
Vince is currently working on a biographical accounting of his martial arts journey that began at Sierra College with Sensei Ed Burgess, Larry Wight, and Bob Meyer. He credits their training with saving his life on more than one occasion. He can be contacted via email at email@example.com
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