Larry Beal was Sensei Jesse Boyd's first martial arts instructor. He was tragically killed in a farming accident in 2010. The following is a transcript of Jesse's statement given at Sensei Beal's funeral on November 18, 2010. What more can be said?
The beauty of Israel is slain upon thy high places: how are the mighty fallen” (II Samuel 1:27).
I truly believed that Larry Beal was the best martial artist in the world, and it was an incredible honor to have been mentored by him. More important than skill, however, was the humble meekness that clothed his character and the selfless patience required to train the untamed punk I once was. Under Sensei Beal’s tutelage, the Lord taught me much that I have literally carried to the ends of the earth: wisdom that has often led away from precarious hazard and knowledge that continues to serve as a bridge for the bold proclamation of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Thank you, my old friend. Newton Martial Arts and Teashikido is ever at a loss by your passing. May I and those you have entrusted be counted worthy to teach others as you have taught us.
“How are the mighty fallen, and the weapons of war perished” (II Samuel 1:27).
Of great comfort is my remembrance of once confronting the one who awarded me a black belt with the things of the Lord and the glorious Gospel. I rejoiced as my Sensei assured me that his faith and trust was in Christ alone. Almighty God is faithful to His promises and His Word is absolute truth, therefore see:
“that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope. For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him . . . and so shall we ever be with the Lord” (I Thessalonians 4:13-17).
Sensei Beal, my old friend: You have seen the Blessed Saviour’s face, how can I not envy? I will look for you in the Kingdom.
“The righteous perisheth, and no man layeth it to heart: and merciful men are taken away, none considering that the righteous is taken away from the evil to come” (Isaiah 57:1).
Even so, come quickly, Lord Jesus. Jesse Boyd, Yondan
brian keith chapman
When Larry Beal (see above) was tragically killed and went to be with the Lord in 2010, Brian Chapman spoke some powerful words at his funeral. Later, Sensei Boyd came to know Brian personally when some real trial, tribulation, and betrayal had him seriously considering hanging up his black belt for the last time. Now, it's apparent that the Lord put him in Jesse's life as a real friend and Christian brother at a time when he needed one in martial arts circles. He was invited to train in Brian's dojo, and Brian helped him to open a dojo of his own over in Hickory, a school that continues to operate today. In the beginning, when it was just Jesse and a few beginner students, Brian would come over to teach and lend support during student promotions. Some of those beginners who have Brian’s signature on their early certificates are now black belts themselves. Had it not been for Brian’s friendship, Sensei Boyd very well may have quit martial arts altogether, and the opportunities that have arisen since to use martial arts as a tool to point others to faith in Jesus Christ in places like South Africa, Bangladesh, India, Nepal, Peru, and Israel would have never happened.
In 2015, Brian Chapman went home to be with the Lord after a sudden and brief 6-month battle with Lou Gehrig's disease. He leaves behind a wife and two young daughters. Sensei Boyd had the privilege of reading Psalm 23 to Brian in his hospital bed while encouraging him to go dwell in the House of the Lord. Immediately thereafter, Brian took his last breath. Several days later, Jesse had the distinct privilege of preaching Brian's funeral at Hoyle Memorial Baptist Church in Lawndale, NC and in the presence of many martial artists who knew not the Lord Jesus Christ. Brian's adamant request concerning his funeral was that it be PREACHED. Was it? You be the judge.