Wednesday, July 01, 2015

Russell is buried in his Sambo Kit

This Photo was taken when Russel was training in St Petersburg Russia

Russell 1968-2015 is buried with his Sambo Kit, Medals and Black Belt a fitting tribute to this very good man

I had the honor to be asked by his wife to speak at the funeral and give a tribute here is what I said

Russell Dodds

A very nice man, a man who cared, A man who loved his family, a man who worked hard, a Black Belt in Judo, Sambo and CombatSombo and most of all a man who was liked and respected

The amount of face book comments proved his popularity but it was not just from this country I had emails from all over the World including ones from the International Sambo President Vasily Shestakov and the Commonwealth Sambo Association Lord Simon Reading

I first met Russell about 12 years ago to me he was just another guy he wanted to do Judo and Sambo but as the years went by he was to become a lot more then that.

He was to become a Black belt in both Judo and Sambo competing for Great Britain in the World Masters Sambo Championship this was in spite of the fact that he had breathing problem and would have to use a pump on occasions. I think this was the first thing that impressed me was the fact he would not give in. He once said to me that he intended to prove to himself that he could still compete. Being a competitor can be a very selfish path to take, as you are just concerned about your own personal achievement and this was not in Russell’s nature

He moved to coaching both Judo, Sambo and Combat Sambo, he formed his own Cub the Bedford Grappling Academy and he made a point in that is was a Non Profit making club. He organised all sorts of events for member’s competition; courses etc. and several times took them on trips to Europe

It was not long before myself as both President of the British Sombo Federation and International Budo Federation realised his potential and he was soon voted on to the BSF Executive Committee, within a few short years he was Vice President of the BSF and augmented the English Sambo Federation in which he came President

Russell was a worker he believed passionately in what he was doing and would on many occasions put his own money into project. One such occasion was when we had a problem getting Sambo equipment into GB he went and bought bulk load form Pakistan, he organised several British Opens in Bedford and ideal venue for the country plus he took teams abroad and represented the BSF at many International meetings. He played a very important part in the very successful Presidents Cup in 2014 held in Dartford. His last International was recently in Croatia at the European Championships where is was a team Leader and GB representative at the European Sambo Federation Congress

Yet it was not all work for Russell he could be the life and soul of the Party at the 2013 World Championships in Russia he was the one who got all the countries up dancing

My last trip with him was in Japan 2014 and although we talked a lot on the phone during the week the face-to-face meetings were always the best. He would continually bring up new ideas and the one he really wanted was to organised the Europeans in Bedford but the conversation always went back to his family

We often say someone will be missed but let me assure you Russell will be missed as my son John Said WHO CAN REPLACE HIM


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