Pan-Am Tang Soo Do FederationPan-Am Tang Soo Do Federation

Tae Kwon Do Times 1982

Remarkable Man, Kim Chong Su!

The scene is the York Sports Night Show in York, Pennsylvania. A crowd of 1,400 sports enthusiasts were on hand January 1982 at William Penn Senior High Auditorium to view demonstrations and speeches by such sports luminaries as Oscar Robertson, Bill Bergey, Tom Seaver and Eddie Murray. The crowd, at first, gave a cool reception to the first guest of the program. Laughter and some less than surreptitious giggles were heard when Master Chong Su Kim prepared to demonstrate the power of TaeKwon-Do. The disrespect lessened when Mr Kim informed them that continuation of this attitude would result in his immediate departure. He then squelched their disrespect completely by proceeding to break six one-inch boards by hand, and four two-inch bricks with his head.

Later, an assistant with a sledge hammer proceeded to break concrete blocks on Mr Kim's chest while he was reclining on a bed of broken glass. Needless to say, the Sports luminaries had a great deal of difficulty following this act. Master Kim, who only recently arrived in the United States from Korea, was chief instructor of the famed White Horse Division of the Korean Army. In 1968, he was the Korean lightweight champion and instructor of the United States Air Force Fighting Division. In 1977, Mr. Kim became a master, and made his move to the United States. Now 32, Kim came to the United States without much more than the clothes on his back, an associate degree in law, and his TaeKwon-Do master's certificate.

His first job in the United States was as a machine operator, where he raised enough money to open his first TaeKwon-Do school. He began with just four students. Just one year later, in 1978, he was able to relocate. And with the help of some advertising, his school grew to 30 pupils. In April of 1981, Mr. Kim made another big move. He bought his own building and now has nearly 100 students. He is now able to devote full time to the instruction of TaeKwon-Do. Master Kim has been a TaeKwon Do student since he was 9 years old, his office is adorned with awards and certificates. He won three varsity awards in junior high, three in high school and four in college (Kukmin Law College). He won the Asian bantam weight championship in 1970 in Hong Kong, and before coming to United States won 40 or 50 Trophies from the World TaeKwon-Do Federation.

Of all of Master Kim's awards and degrees, his proudest possession is a letter of commendation written to him by assassinated President Park Chung Hee of South Korea. Mr Kim's students showed their loyalty when upon moving into their present building, they did all the work themselves. They cleaned up and installed furniture, lockers and restrooms. Kim and his wife mean while did all the sign work. Kim remembers the last names of all his students and their children. He has a strict rule that he will not accept any youngsters as students if their grades are not up to par "School and home come first," he tells the parents. Once the kid's grades are where they should be, they are welcomed to the school.

Mr Kim's success is remarkable. If the past is any indication, his future certainly looks promising. Yes, his success is remarkable, but then, Mr. Chong Su Kim is a remarkable man