Tohei Shihan was responsible for the establishment and maintenance of thousands of students in nearly 50 dojos throughout the Midwest, including Arizona, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Minnesota, Nebraska, North Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, and Wisconsin.
Tohei Shihan was promoted to 8th dan in 1989 and practiced and lead classes up until just two months before his passing away at the age of 70 on July 2, 1999 [in connection with complications due to lung disease]. Tohei Shihan leaves behind his wife Joanne Kiyoko Tohei and son Akihiro Tohei.
Tohei Shihan, or just Sensei, as he was known to the tens of thousands of students whose lives he touched, brought to the United States Midwest Region much more than any words can express.
It is not possible to put on paper the gratitude students feel towards Sensei, who helped each individual student grow from Aikido infants unable to walk or speak to young adults in Aikido practice, able to appreciate the path laid down by O-Sensei. The words here chosen can only pale to the life of such a great practitioner and teacher.