Karate granny will keep kicking despite mall closure - KCTV5

Karate granny will keep kicking despite mall closure

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After more than three decades in martial arts, 80-year-old Helen Dugan is a granny who can kick most butts.

So she wasn't going to let a mall closing keep her down.

Dugan has been teaching at her Champs/American Karate Inc. for the past 11 years. The studio had been located at the Metcalf South Mall.

But with the mall closing this summer, the karate studio is moving a little north. As of June 2, Dugan can be found at a studio at 91st Street and Metcalf Avenue.

At Metcalf South, the studio had carved its own memories with 80 percent of the students having special needs that folks could see in action via wide open window.

"I invite them in to watch because it's really so heartwarming to see," she said. "Special needs kids work 10 times harder than other children."

Now Dugan and others are packing up boxes and looking for new memories.

"I've made a lot of friends here and yeah, it's hurting a lot," she said. "But that's life and that's what we do in here. We adapt, so we're adapting."

She is the mother of five, grandmother to 11 and a great-grandmother to 14.

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