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Ken Yasuda Passes Away At 52

danieltx

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I don't expect most here to know Ken Yasuda as he never turned pro in the IFBB and didn't compete in the NPC. He passed unexpectedly on August 6. I just read about it today which isn't surprising as in Asian cultures deaths are often announced days if not weeks after one passes.

He started off playing baseball as a child and wanted to go pro. He came to the US for school and played baseball at the University of Southern California. An injury ended his baseball career but that led him to lifting - which he was introduced to by retired MLB start Mark McGwire, who was also at USC at the time.

He had top placings in Japanese bodybuilding shows, including winning Mr. Japan, but had other interests like mixed martial arts and professional wrestling. He coached a team for IFC in 2007, was a trainer for New Japan Pro Wrestling, and worked with guys like Tito Ortiz and Kazayuki Fujita. Before Don Frye made his jump to pro wrestling he trained with Yasuda and went from a 210lb. fighter with a good physique to a 230lb. ripped pro wrestler who looked more like a bodybuilder.

He had a few small parts in US and Japanese movies and TV shows and did multiple training videos. He remained involved with mixed martial arts and pro wrestling for most of his life.

I'm hoping @hawkmoon can add more since he's been in Japan so long.

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R.I.P. I remember seeing him in a magazine or somewhere back in the day. this is sad. Prayers go to him and his family and friends.
 

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