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Community Group to Honor Judo Teacher

Roy Murakami, a longtime judo instructor, businessman and area resident, will be honored tonight for his community service.

Murakami will receive the San Fernando Valley Japanese-American Community Center’s Golden Heart Award at a ceremony in Pacoima.

“Roy Murakami is an outstanding example of an individual who is dedicated and devoted to his cultural heritage, to his community and to his family,” Harold F. Muraoka, of the Japanese-American Community Center said in a written statement.

Murakami was born in Los Angeles in 1931 to Japanese immigrants and, except for a three-year period during World War II in which he was interned with his family at Manzanar Relocation Center in the Owens Valley, he has lived his entire life in North Hollywood.

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After serving as student body president and captain of the varsity football team, Murakami graduated from North Hollywood High School in 1950.

Murakami served during the Korean War, then returned home to marry Michiko Taguchi. Together they have raised five children.

Besides teaching judo for 40 years, Murakami continues to run the Sego Nursery in North Hollywood.

Murakami’s Judo Dojo at the Japanese-American Community Center was a training center for the 1984 Olympic Games in Los Angeles.

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Tonight’s award ceremony and dinner will begin at 7 p.m. at the community center, 12953 Branford St. in Pacoima. Tickets are $30. For more information: call (818) 899-1989.


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