Michael Delaney Sensei

Delaney Sensei began his karate journey in 1969 at the Atlantic Karate Club under the tutelage of Dr. William Cole. He was very passionate about karate and would attain the rank 6th dan, Renshi (elite instructor designation). Delaney Sensei also trained in Kobudo and Iaido achieving dan levels in both. Delaney Sensei was very active at the organizational level and he assisted Higashi Sensei in the development of manuals for both Chito-ryu karate and kobudo. He is also one of the founding fathers of The Nova Scotia Karate Assoc., now, Karate NS. He was the Technical Director for Chito-ryu for Nova Scotia and Newfoundland and, as such, he played a vital role in the expansion of Chito-ryu across the eastern provinces.

My story of Delaney Sensei is not unlike that of many others who had the good fortune to know him. He cared very much about the PEOPLE of Chito-ryu and he would spend countless hours counselling and assisting them such that they could stand strong and tall and endure for years to come. Delaney Sensei was very charismatic and due to his efforts, shortly before his passing in 2003, Chito-ryu counted 17 dojos in Nova Scotia. Unfortunately, his constant travelling took a toll on his family and although he never complained it was something he acknowledged in his latter years.

A typical visit to Yarmouth included me picking up Delaney Sensei at the train at 6pm Friday night. Have a sandwich on the way to the dojo. Class starts at 7pm. Class is over at 9pm. Get Chinese food and stay up until 2 answering my many questions. Saturday clinic all day. Quick supper then Gradings. Up half the night discussing gradings. Up early Sunday, quick b-fast and off to gym all day. End of day grab supper and pack him back on the train back to Halifax! Wow, who would do that you ask? Delaney Sensei did it many times, and he did the same for all the clubs, I`m quite sure.

Personally, there is no other individual who has had a greater influence on my karate journey than Delaney Sensei. He spent countless hours answering all my questions and guiding me along the path. I have fond memories of heading up to Halifax in November with a bag full of live lobster we had just caught. Delaney Senseis eyes would just light up as we headed to the kitchen to cook them up. I would never go to Halifax without paying a visit to 4682 Kane St., Delaney Senseis home. His door was always open. In the end he was like a second father to me. I could talk to him about anything. He supported me through some of the darkest times in my life and for that I am forever grateful.

Delaney Sensei taught me many lessons both in karate and in life. He always showed great confidence in me and taught me to believe in myself. If I could do this, then I could do anything I set my mind to. As far as karate is concerned, one of the most valuable lessons he taught me was this: Some people will say bad things about you. Some people will run you into the ground every chance they get. They will throw stones at you and call you to the lowest. It does not matter. What matters is that you find a way to keep moving forward. If you can do this, people will follow you. He was 100% correct.

I could go on for quite some time telling stories of my beloved Delaney Sensei, however, suffice to say that he certainly was one of a kind. He was a masterful storyteller, and his laugh was genuine and infectious to all those around him. I am quite sure that if it were not for Delaney Senseis guidance, I would most likely not be doing karate today. He was the one who kept the fire burning and fanned the flames that continue to burn to this day and, God willing, for many more years to come. Delaney Senseis passion for Chito-ryu and his generosity and caring for those on the path will always be a source of inspiration for me. I miss him every day…