On Saturday, May 7, ASU lost a treasured Board Member, Dr. Craig Eddy, 6th Dan. Eddy Sensei had been a student of Saotome Shihan since the 1970s. During that time, he traveled to Sarasota with the intention of devoting his life to the study of Aikido under Sensei. However, Sensei saw a different path for him, and counseled him to return and finish his medical studies, and do his good in the world by becoming the doctor he was meant to be.
Dr. Eddy became a successful cardiac surgeon in Washington and later Montana. After overcoming a tragic accident to his right hand which ended his surgical career, he earned a law degree and ran several major healthcare corporations and hospitals in Montana, all while continuing his Aikido practice. For his commitment to aikido, Saotome Shihan awarded Craig Ueshiba Juku status (direct disciple). Most recently, when Saotome Shihan expressed his vision for the evolution and growth of ASU going forward, he worked with Eddy Sensei to create what is now the ASU board of directors, of which Craig was a key member.
Craig converted the ASU corporation into the non-profit that we have today. Sensei’s trust in him to do this was earned through his 30 years of dedication to Saotome Sensei and the Aikido Schools of Ueshiba. Craig worked tirelessly and at great personal sacrifice behind the scenes of ASU, never seeking recognition, but working for the greater good of the organization and to help achieve aikido’s true purpose: to bring peace to the world.
To those who knew him, he was a gentle giant of sorts, with a warm smile, even warmer hug, and a welcoming spirit.
Craig Eddy Sensei gave generously of financial resources, but also countless hours of dedicated work as an attorney. He facilitated a smooth transition into the non-profit status, and believed that as a non-profit, ASU would realize its greatest potential, including fulfillment of Saotome Shihan’s plan to make an Aiki University at the Myakka City Shrine.
The ASU Board of Directors respectfully requests that each dojo take 3 minutes of silence before the next class in order to collectively show our gratitude for what Dr. Craig Eddy Sensei has done for our organization.