Grandmaster Robert A. Janecek, Kudan, 9th degree Black Belt.
1963: Grandmaster Janecek started his martial arts training with Judo in a dojo at Western Ave. and 99th St in Chicago, Illinois, under Sensei Toni. Grandmaster Janecek worked nights at this time and was the only student during the day. He worked out with Sensei Toni for about 6 months. During that time, they went to quite a few tournaments together. Then Grandmaster Janecek was drafted into the United States Army. While in Vietman, Grandmaster Janecek took lessons in Saigon, but his military jobs as crew chief and gunner and his constant helicopter missions left very little free time.
1975: Grandmaster Janecek started Karate at Chicago Judo & Karate Centers in Hammond, Indiana. He received a Yellow Belt from John Trotter and Harry Reid (Wolf Man)
1976: Grandmaster Janecek received his Green Belt at Chicago Judo & Karate from Harry Reid (Wolf Man) and John Parish (Sugar Bear).
1977-1983: Grandmaster Janecek started working nights but could not find a day class at the dojo. The owner of Chicago Judo and Karate introduced him to a couple of black belts who worked the swing shifts at the Gary steel mills. They were always looking for someone to spar with. An iron worker named Lyle Schickner the 5th, took Master Janecek under his arm and trained him for several years. Many of his promotions were given to him at black belt parties in the city. Then Chicago Judo and Karate closed its doors and Mr. Schickner got divorced. Before Mr. Schickner moved to California, he introduced Grandmaster Janecek to Grandmaster Ed Quick and Grandmaster Frank Novak. He spent 2 years at Grandmaster Ed Quick’s school on 79th Street on Chicago’s South Side before it closed. Then Grandmaster Janecek took 6 months of Tae Kwon Do lessons at Master Lee’s dojo in Lansing, Illinois. Grandmaster Ed Quick started teaching again at the Chicago Ridge Park District. After taking classes at Grandmaster Ed Quick’s for a short time, Grandmaster Janecek started teaching classes as a Brown Belt. Grandmasters Ed Quick and Frank Novak were becoming quite involved with the startup of MAKA (Martial Arts Karate Association) at the 35th & Halsted Dojo. Grandmaster Ed Quick, 7th, Grandmaster Frank Novak, 7th, and Sensei Curtis Jones promoted Grandmaster Janecek to Shodan (1st degree black belt) while he was teaching at the park district. The park district shut down the karate program in favor of expanding the basketball program. Grandmaster Janecek would work out at the MAKA’s monthly meeting at their dojo. Shortly after that, Grandmaster Ed Quick was shot and would spend the rest of his life in a wheelchair, paralyzed from the chest down. Living in Calumet City, Grandmaster Janecek tried Aikido at a college for two semesters. After that, he studied Kali/Eskrima under Rich Lamoureaux for a while.
1984: While studying Jeet Kune Do, Grandmaster Janecek received a phone call from Grandmaster Ed Quick asking him to come to his new dojo in Chicago at 47th & Western. Grandmaster Ed Quick’s love for karate had not faltered! It had only grown! At this time Grandmaster Janecek had found his niche and was promoted to Nidan (2nd degree Black Belt) by Grandmaster Ed Quick. Grandmaster Janecek helped Grandmaster Ed Quick teach his adult classes and 3 dojos for 29 years up until Grandmaster Ed Quick’s death in 2012. Grandmaster Ed Quick was not only his Sensei, but also his friend. Together they taught hundreds of students and promoted a few to black belt, those they did they were very proud of. Several went on to open their own dojos, including Sensei Joe Roque. Over the years, Grandmaster Janecek was promoted by Grandmaster Ed Quick, 9th, and additional MAKA Masters to his current rank of Hachidan, 8th degree Black Belt in 2007.
2011: Grandmaster Janecek started helping Sensei Joe Roque (Grandmaster Ed Quick’s student) teach classes at his new Dojo, Dragon Fire Karate, located in New Lenox, Illinois.
2013: Grandmaster Janecek was promoted to Kudan (9th degree black belt) at the International Martial Arts Council of America by the Grandmasters on July 19, 2013. On July 20, 2013, Grandmaster Janecek was inducted into the United States Martial Arts Hall of Fame and received an award for Golden Life in the Platimun Division.
2016: In January of 2016 Grandmaster Janecek received his Level 1 teaching certification in Krav Maga under Mr. Marty Cale and the Krave Maga Association. Grandmaster Janecek is also an instructor in Krav Maga at Dragon Fire Karate.