Letters of Recommendation

The following are letters from former students of John Kary.

P.O. BOX 969 

March 16, 1998

Dear John:

On behalf of the Special Forces soldiers of Detachment One, I would like to thank you for the outstanding Close Quarter Combat Training you provided us in January. I strongly believe your American Combatives program has significantly enhanced our ability to be successful in a close quarter combat situation. It contributes significantly to our Force Protection capabilities, which is one of the priorities on our Mission Essential Task List (METL).

Your approach to CQC based on the proven and simple techniques developed by the OSS during World War II will be a great benefit to our soldiers. The emphasis on gross motor skill movements that can be easily remembered and delivered in high stress situations is a significant benefit of the program. As the role of the National Guard Special Forces soldier continues to expand we must be prepared to operate in a wide variety of missions that will require realistic, proven close quarter combat techniques. I believe your American Combatives System, without question, meets this need. 

Your personal dedication to serving military and law enforcement, practical real world experience and simple, effective and proven techniques are the hallmark of your program. I greatly appreciate you sharing these with the soldiers of Detachment One. I believe as a result of this we are much better prepared to carry out our missions.


James A. Hoyer


February 21,1998

Dear John,

I took a American Combatives course in May 1996 with Instructor John Kary. I feel John Kary has found the missing link in Law Enforcement Survival Skills. I have been in Law Enforcement for 11 years and have been to several Defensive Tactics Schools. After taking American Combatives with Instructor John Kary, I knew that my search was over looking for Defensive Tactics that work.

Mr. Kary is genuinely concerned about Police Officers and their safety. Mr. Kary can be credited for bringing American Combatives to Athens County, Ohio. 

A Deputy Sheriff is alive and well today after he obtained skills that he learned in American Combatives. A large male subject attacked the Deputy, knocking him to the ground, attempting to remove his weapon from his holster. The Officer was able to stop the suspect from removing his weapon and take the suspect in custody. I would encourage anyone who is interested in learning the best survival skills available to contact John Kary and take a course in American Combatives.


Sergeant,Rodney Smith


Dear Mr. Kary,

I am writing this letter to express my formal gratitude for the training that you have provided me over the past five years. American Combatives has proven to be instrumental for me during the course of my duties as a Special Agent with the U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Diplomatic Security. While assigned to the Bureau's Mobile Security Division, I was required to provide specialized defensive tactics instruction to Marine Security Guards and U.S. citizens at American Embassies throughout the world. Although I am a certified Defensive Tactics Instructor for DOS, the concepts that I learned while under your tutelage were instrumental in all my teachings.

Your development of American Combatives has provided the Law Enforcement Community with an economical, practical and effective form of self defense that is unsurpassed by any other system.

I urge you to share your training system with other members of the Law Enforcement and Military communities; combat situations in today's society require nothing short of the directness and reliability of American Combatives.

I look forward to training with you in the future; please contact me if you will be conducting any seminars in the Washington,DC area.


Russell Ricalde


Dear Mr. Kary,

Thanks for your patience, expertise, and professionalism during my week of training. You are an inspiration to the human race and exemplify the best of the human spirit. You give, not only, professional training, but a "never-give-up" spirit.

I appreciated the following:

A. Your desire to personalize my training. You inquired about my office environment [door, desk arrangement, etc.] and provided training for various attacks. This made my training special, unique, and extremely useful.

B. You spent time at night trying to discover alternative instructional methods. It was obvious to me that training others is a calling, not a job. You are trying to help people, not just make money.

C. You individualized my training by assessing my strengths and weaknesses. During the Friday afternoon session, you suggested practice activities that utilized my strengths. I will practice the attacks and sequences you suggested.

I highly recommend your training for all. As a middle school principal I regularly evaluate teachers. You would get the highest rating [superior] on our school evaluation form. I have a black belt in Tae Kwon Do and highly recommend that everyone with a traditional martial arts background be trained by you.

I will always remember my training, our conversations, and your encouragement. I hope I never need to use this training, but it is reassuring to know that I can defend myself, if the need arises.


Rickey Cox


To whom it may concern,

I am writing to you to "sing the praises" as it were, of a certain John Kary. Mr. Kary is an instructor of a martial art he has developed called American Combatives, and as this art is remarkable, so too is its instructor.

Let me first explain my background as a knowledgeable reference on this subject, and my relationship with Mr. Kary. I am a Marine Staff Sergeant. I spent four years in the U.S. Army Special Forces, and thirteen years in the U.S. Marine Corps, and two of those years as a Reconnaissance Marine. Throughout this time, I was instructed in many different forms of hand to hand combat and knife fighting techniques. One day I contacted Mr. Kary and arranged to observe him at his art. I was interested for two reasons- the first being that he too had served in the Marines- in Vietnam, in fact, which brings me to the second reason- he lost his sight there.

In short, I was amazed at what I saw. I have to this day never seen anything like Mr. Kary's system as far as effectiveness and its easiness to learn. I realized that all my prior knowledge in the fighting arts would be worthless if I were put against someone with Mr. Kary's technique; his knife fighting tactics in particular. I became a private student on the spot.

Mr. Kary also has two ongoing programs with the Marines, besides his private instructing. Mr. Kary also trains the inspector-instructor Staff of the Second Battalion Twenty Fifth Marines, and on drill weekends he trains the STA Platoon of the reserve Battalion. I highly recommend this system to anyone serious about learning a truly effective, no-nonsense, "offensive self defense" system.

Thomas A. Smith


John and Staff,

I took the point shooting class given by Kenny Burner and Richard Knight on 2/12/00. The instruction was excellent and exceeded my expectations. I learned how to handle tactical reloads, drawing from concealment and other self defense issues. I am amazed at the confidence I now have in my abilities to defend myself and my family. This course was one of my best investments since I started shooting handguns twenty years ago. I have recommended the course to my father and a shooting buddy and you will probably get a phone call from both of them.