Olavides, Eric

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Eric as people close to him fondly call, is the antithesis of the eskrimador stereotype. Until thisday he remains opposed to being called a Grandmaster. A very amiable, humble and a God-fearing person, Eric has remained reclusive for the past ten years and shared his art to only a handful of close acquaintances, among them was the late Edgar G. Sulite. His long hibernation from the martial arts scene was not a matter of choice but rather due to other personal commitments, occupational constraints and the environment that was not conducive to propagating De Campo 1-2-3 Orihinal. He has already retired from teaching Law Enforcement Subjects and Defensive Tactics at the College of Criminology of Misamis University.  He was only 13 years old in 1957 when he took his first eskrima lessons from his Uncle  Martiniano Lumacang. In 1964 he continued his studies under Billy C. Baaclo . His long hard apprenticeship with Grandmaster Jose D. Caballero began in 1968. Curious for knowledge of other eskrima styles, he took an extensive one on one course in Doce Pares under Fernando Candawan. While studying Doce Pares, he spent endless hours developing long-range techniques to counter the "bull-charging" close quarters fighting style of Candawan. Eric described sparring with Candawan: "He was a brawler and focused with only one thing once you cross sticks: that is to charge close quarters at the expense of absorbing blows and immediately execute a disarm." Eric also holds a 1st Dan Blackbelt in Shorin-Ryu, and for a while also studied Kok Sut with former college classmate and confidante Antonio R. Ching. A consummate martial artist with an open mind, he tirelessly researched and studied other fighting disciplines and philosophies.

Although he has modified and improved a large bulk of the striking mechanics of GM Caballero's method, Eric, in all humility, despite clamor from followers, refused to adopt another name and brand it as his own invention. With all due respects to the spirit GM Caballero, Fernando Candawan and Doce Pares, he is against putting any label to his style of eskrima. Eventually, Eric agreed to change the name of De Campo on one condition: it will only be named after the inventor. Thus as his ultimate tribute to the Grandmaster, the method is now renamed simply as De Campo JDC-IO. With great hesitation he finally relented to have his initials attached to the acronym JDC-IO which means Jose D. Caballero and Ireneo Olavides. For him, "style" is a unique individual character, and it can never be institutionalized or standardized. The vicious cycle has to end somewhere and giving due recognition, perpetuating and developing the original methods  of the old grandmasters is the greatest achievement of a mature martial artist and gentleman. Until now he maintains that he is not worthy of the title Grandmaster. It is bestowed only to a few icons of the Filipino Martial Arts like and the other great champions and innovators of our ancestors warrior arts. For all his humility and principles he is truly a great Eskrimador and scholar of the Filipino Martial Arts.