CRESTVIEW — Greg Bledsoe has earned bragging rights in martial arts.
He received the National Korean Martial Arts Association’s Master of the Year award while attending the group’s 40th anniversary celebration earlier this month in Canada.
Bledsoe, 58, Gordon Martial Arts’ primary instructor, was selected at the discretion of NKMAA President Rudy Timmerman.
"I made the choice because it was obvious to me that, for many years, this man put forth efforts that I consider beyond the norm," Timmerman said. "I might add that this did not surprise me, as I have observed that the entire staff of Gordon Martial Arts follows the example set by Chief Master Thomas Gordon."
"This is something that means a lot," Bledsoe said. "It was an absolutely outstanding feeling to know that somebody has been watching me enough and working with me enough to feel that I was worthy."
Bledsoe taught music for 35 years in Okaloosa County public schools. He retired in 2012 from Davidson Middle School, where his wife Keitha currently instructs chorus. He’s currently the choir director at First Presbyterian Church in DeFuniak Springs.
Gordon, the school's owner, said in an email that the school is "very fortunate" to have Bledsoe as its primary instructor.
Bledsoe said his love for martial arts goes beyond his classes at the Crestview school.
"When I am not teaching it, I am thinking about it; I am ironing out my uniform, reading martial arts magazines," he said. "It’s something that consumes my life."
Contact News Bulletin Staff Writer Matthew Brown at 850-682-6524 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @cnbMatthew.