Professor William Morris
AJJF Professor 1966
December 2, 1919 – February 18, 1984
William Morris was born in Fresno, California on December 2, 1919. While serving in the infantry in 1941, Bill was first exposed to martial arts. His unit was also trained by Master Okazaki’s students while he was stationed at the Jungle Training School on Oahu, Hawaii, in 1943.
Injured in 1945, Bill left the military in 1947 to pursue a master’s degree in English philosophy. With the coming of the Korean War, he returned to the military, and obtained a Master’s Certificate, U.S. Academy of Arms.
Transferred overseas, he studied fencing, kendo and judo. Discharged from the military, he continued to fence and by 1954, he was teaching English and fencing for Napa College. In the mid 1950’s he studied judo. Soon after, he enrolled in Prof. Laws’ school in Oakland. Eventually he taught classes in jujitsu, judo, karate, aikido, tai chi ch’uan and escrima, for over a decade.
In 1968, Bill completed his long-delayed doctoral dissertation and traveled to Europe. Over the next two years, bill studied aikido and karate in Japan. Returning to Napa, Bill taught classes for several more years.
He furthered the philosophy of Master Okazaki and the AJJF through his publication of Kodenkan Jujitsu.
Retiring in 1980, Professor Morris lived in Napa, California, where he attended law school until his death on February 18, 1984.
Reprinted from Danzan Ryu: An Unbroken Tradition (1992) by permission of the author, Mary L. Boland.