Pictured from left are: in back, Paul Doumanis, Sensei Tim Duvelsdorf, Sensei Tom Shull, Sensei Chuck Ercolano, Sensei Barret Myzak, Jose Gomez; in front, Ian Houtman, Kaitlyn Gallaugher, Jack Marchioni, and Tyler Lohwin.
VERNON — Six students from the Vernon Valley Karate Academy put their skills, strength and determination on the line as they tested for Black Belt rank on May 18.
Each student demonstrated proficiency in all of the necessary aspects of this martial art. This included performing kata, prearranged forms that demonstrate karate technique, kumite, sparring against other black-belt level students and application of their skills in self-defense situations
“All of my candidates rose to the occasion and made me so very proud," Sensei Thomas Shull, owner and head instructor, said. "After years of preparation and commitment, these students found that they have what it takes to achieve the coveted rank of Black Belt. I praise their commitment, devotion, spirit, and strength.”
Promoted to the rank of Shodan (1st-degree black belt) were: Tyler Lohwin, Kaitlyn Gallaugher, Jack Marchioni, and Ian Houtman. Promoted to Sandan (3rd-degree black belt) were Jose Gomez and Paul Doumanis.