Daughter of beloved martial arts teacher killed in Bridgeport closes Tae Kwan Do school

The daughter of a beloved martial arts teacher, who was killed while working security at a Bridgeport business over the weekend, has closed down his Tae Kwan Do school.

News 12 Staff

Jul 16, 2021, 7:36 PM

Updated 1,012 days ago

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The daughter of a beloved martial arts teacher, who was killed while working security at a Bridgeport business over the weekend, has closed down his Tae Kwan Do school.
Candles, balloons and flowers sit outside of the Chen Huu Academy in Stratford in remembrance of Joselito Calderon - master instructor and owner of the school.
Cynthia Calderon tells News 12 that Chen Huu Academy in Stratford was more than just a martial arts studio, it was a community center and sanctuary for many people.
"Papi was a father to others, like he took people under his wing and mentored them and cared for them. I didn't know that. Now that he passed, I get to hear all the stories, and it hurts it even more," Cynthia Calderon says.
Following his death, she's learned just how much he impacted young people in the Bridgeport area over the past two decades. She tells News 12 he got a lot of kids off the streets and allowed those short on money to come for free.
"He taught them to respect their parents. He taught them no fighting in the street. He taught them to be kind with each other. He taught them love," Cynthia Calderon says.
Joselito Calderon was shot to death while working security at Copa Restaurant in Bridgeport over the weekend. Police have released few details except to say he was an innocent victim along with another person who was also shot but is recovering.
Cynthia Calderon says knowing her father, he was trying to protect someone.
"For me to get a call at like three in the morning telling me he's no longer here," she says. "Like my world has stopped."
She's now asking anyone with information on the killer to go to police.
"Help us, pray for us because this is the worst pain I have ever felt in my entire life," Cynthia Calderon says.
She says she plans to give each of her father's students a picture of him and a white rose in hopes they'll continue to remember his message and his spirit rather than remember the way he died.
"I feel like he was an angel here on earth and God has called him back home," Cynthia Calderon says.
Joselito Calderon was born in Ecuador and started his first martial arts school there at the age of 16.
He also served in Ecuador's military and as a bodyguard for the president there before coming to Bridgeport more than 20 years ago.
The wake for Joselito Calderon is being held Sunday from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. at Pistey Funeral Home in Stratford.


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