Second Message from Datu Kelly Worden...


Don Rearic

During the 80's on the West coast Professor put much emphasis on the bolo. Additionally, Professor pointed out to me because of the location of my school, i.e., in the military area of Ft. Lewis, McChord AFB, Bremerton Navel Base and the National Guard, I should specialize in the bladed arts. Additionally, before training with Remy I received my black belt in Combat Arnis from J. Cui Brocka. I would have to go into storage to track certificates but 1981 sounds right. David Bird and I were the only one certified in the U.S. Cliff Lenderman left the flock after receiving a Trainer Certification and joined with Inosanto.

Cui was in the U.S. Rangers and was the last to receive National recognition from President Marcos for Sports Abroad, Cui also was a certified Jungle Warfare Instructor, long story short, my blade craft was being established early on, i.e., "Biker Ryu," during the time I ran in the circles of my brother, I witnessed several serious slashings and one killing within the "sphere of steel" i.e., by knives...

It is no secret I was always in the wrong place at the wrong time. Blades have long intrigued me, to say the least. I didn't get into Martial Arts to learn about Karate, I was already boxing, my first gym I opened was in conjunction with Sugar Ray Seales when he was still fighting Professionally...

Moving on, I really wanted to express bolo was the skills Remy shared with me and that is the extraction I adapted to, it is as clear as traditional blade work gets...

Let's see, July 28th 2001 was my birthday, I turned 49 years old. Gee my wife said, "What do you want for your b-day"? After only 20 years of marriage I felt a little selfish when I replied "I need to go see Remy!?!" Since Remy was actually going to move into our home with us it didn't really shock me when Laura responded "Yes I think that's a good Idea!!" Zenman went with me and immediately started working on Remy's legs and feet, man he really liked his feet worked, but that allowed him to move around and sit up. I stopped and bought some flowers, not for Remy but so he could pass them out to the nursing staff. When I told him it was my birthday, Remy was surprised and wished me happy b-day and also thanked me for spending that weekend with him. I told him I had a gift for him, the knife we had talked about for so long was finally in my hand and I wanted to have him "FEEL" the steel...actually I brought about 15 knives up that weekend and we laughed about me bringing them into the Canada, there was nothing over 6" blade length though so I was within my rights.

Additionally, several were in production stages so if I got questioned I felt I could talk my way past customs by submitting my Oregon and Washington Knife Maker/Collector Guild Membership cards along with several articles that had been written about my knife projects. Mike Chen was in the room and was really blown away with several of the handmade models I displayed as we passed steel back and forth checking balance and feel.

I presented Professor the model we spoke of and asked if it was a good model to represent his efforts in the martial arts world, I also told him as I handed it to him "Professor, Steel will outlive us all, Steel is our Legacy to the knife world!" He would not let go of it and kept calling it the "Doblata" and then he said "Baliktaran..." Wow, that's a cool name, I exclaimed! I can't speak a lick of Tagalog, "What does it mean?"

"It means edge to edge! Baliktaran!!!" I explained the design attributes to him and pointed out the Filipino grip thumb choil for trapping and fulcrum loads and releases, others have to see to understand what I am saying...

Professor was pretty jazzed about it, and kept saying "Baliktaran, edge to edge." It was all I could do to pry it from his hand to show him something very unique about the hand filed spine, I said "I don't know how this happened but look at the back edge, can you see the silhouette of the woman's face?" Remy did! He exclaimed, "My God, it is the Goddess of Knife." I said "yeah, it is..."

I will do my best to include the same file finishing in the production versions, I guess that would along with other features make it a custom production, as I doubt it can be produced by machinery. Remy said, " My god, you are not only the Knifemaster of Modern Arnis, you are a maker of Blades..."

I met with a Manufacturer two weeks ago and will be discussing production times this month. I have to do some research on the names Professor used for the knife as well. It might mean, "back to back" and I need to clarify this as well.

I do not think I have to lie or stretch the truth about anything, especially my hand built knives. I have completed one for a tribute to Ted Lucaylucay, and have recently made an agreement to build a prototype for production for Adriano Emperado, all three will be my contribution to the martial arts and knife industry in their names, not mine. I could easily put my name on them and run to the bank and cash them checks, "cause my work sells..." But it is my honor to assist in the path of legacy of Great Men, simple as that....

Who has seen or held the Presas Knife? Remy Presas first and foremost, Mike Chen, "Pip" [Professor's Filipino Care Giver] who was there that night, Yvette Wong-Presas, Roland Dantes, Dan McConnell and his wife "Mo", Datu Dieter Knuttel and a few others, I actually try not to share my knife projects with everyone until they go to production due to creative infringements.

I have alot of stories to share with those who care about Professor, Since it was my birthday, we were laughing about so many things. I do think everyone will enjoy this little tidbit, I said "Professor, I have arranged for some girls to come to your room to do some table dancing for my birthday!" Remy responded with a chuckle, "You will be in Trouble if the nurse catches you!!" I just smiled and returned fire by saying "Well, I was going to tell them, the girls were here for you!!" Immediately he sat up a little and grinned "Well," he exclaimed, "MAYBE I'LL BE IN TROUBLE!!" He was very excited about being in trouble one more time!

Of course it only happened in our minds but it was real for just a moment...we had a little more fun with it by saying to Pip that we would blame it on him and he would be in trouble also...

Before I close I would like to address one word that doesn't sit well with me at any time when tied to my name, thought or intentions. The word "LIE." In over thirty years in the martial arts it has never been "tacked" onto my reputation. Only on the internet do people have the stones to imply or state things of this nature. This has happened with other people in the martial arts as well.

Look Guys...I'm more than ready, willing and able to make the trip to the Portland Seminar so we can have a talk...Datu Hartman and I, as well as others. Then everyone can meet face to face and maybe have a better understanding of who I am, what I know and what I am involved in.

In various statements it has been implied that I have been lying or exaggerating on some issues, that is not the case. This has been spoken about Military Contracts and some other things. No one believes "Progressive" is in Special Forces? There were some heated remarks about that, that's O.K., I think after we meet, all of that will be put to rest. I can prove what I am doing when it comes to training these Guys. As well as who I have trained in the past. It seems so hard for some people to accept that I'm doing this.

People have asked for telephone numbers and as far as I know, they have been provided those phone numbers privately and have not used them. If it is such an issue, isn't it worth a couple of bucks to find out if I'm lying or exaggerating? Come on Guys...what's the deal here? For the cost of a gallon of milk or less, you could find out, why didn't you?

The controversy could have ended right there, the request was granted but no one took the opportunity to use the number they requested in the first place!

Professor Leonard Trigg has expressed an interest in traveling with me, as have others, to the Seminar so we can all get this settled. You'll then know without a doubt what I do. It's not a "challenge" or a "threat" or any such thing so don't go down that road. Many people meet in this game for a meaningful exchange of information, what do you think?

I have to end this, what I hope will be a very productive and positive statement, on a very sad note.

I would like to pay my respects...and for everyone to know what a great loss we suffered as a Nation when we lost Sgt. 1st Class Nathan Chapman. "Chappy" was a Warrior in every sense of the word. He defined the word, he personified..."Warrior." I am so proud to have known this Man and so saddened by his death.

When you lie down tonight, say a prayer for Sgt. Chapman and his Wife and two children please...that they would find some inner peace through this tragedy.

-Datu Kelly S. Worden
i was wondering about your knife making and who taught you it? this post is in no way trying to start something so please do not take it that way. just to let you know i am an apprentice knife maker to my cousin Joe Arnold who has made knives for over 20yrs and is a voting member in the knifemakers guild. do you do stock removal or forge your own? have you worked with any damascus? iam curious to where you learned or are you self taught like so many makers,i feel very fortunate to leaarn from my cousin and Darryll Hibben(brother to gil)who also teaches me when i see him because their previous mistakes make my learning curve much easier. who are your favourite makers and why?
by the way i just fininished training at Datu Hartman's and it was great,we worked on the basics and some tappi tappi and a great time was had by all,and we even watched some tapes on Datu Worden and from what i saw i liked but you can definitely see his other influences besides modern arnis.
Pappy Geo posted a notice of this sad occasion in the General Martial Arts Talk section of this forum. Geo has also posted an email statement from Master Dantes concerning this issue.
Originally posted by jaybacca72 you do stock removal or forge your own?

I don't think Datu Kelly has been forging. I also don't know if he will in the future. He is into stock removal at the moment.

have you worked with any damascus?

I do believe the knife he refers to as the "doblata" or "Baliktaran," at least one of them, was damascus.

iam curious to where you learned or are you self taught like so many makers...

I will ask him when I speak to him tomorrow or the next day. I know I introduced him to a Gentleman personally a couple of years ago who specializes in Fighting Knives for Filipino Martial Artists. He has also worked with Custom Maker Pat Crawford on the WORTAC Folder and Custom Maker Bud Nealy on the Fixed Blade version of the WORTAC. I will try to get the rest of the info for you soon.

...and we even watched some tapes on Datu Worden and from what i saw i liked but you can definitely see his other influences besides modern arnis.

I think it depends on what you watched! What was it specifically?

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