Greek Stephen Xepapas died while swimming at a beach in Tasmania, Australia.
The 58-year-old Xepapas from Greece was killed after he went swimming with his fiancée and drifted astray by a current. His fiancée managed to survive.
Stephen Xepapas was widely renowned in Australia for his skills in martial arts. In Tasmania, he had taught karate to hundreds of people of all ages. He once stated, “karate is a worthwhile lifetime pursuit which develops control, self-discipline and physical and mental fitness for all people male and female, young and old.”
His involvement with martial arts began in 1970 when he was 15. He went to learn Shotokan Karate from Sensei Othma Buchmann after being inspired by the movie scene of the secret service agent James Bond, where he saw the so-called “judo chop” hit.
Xepapas was experienced in Judo, Tai Chi and other Martial Arts, and had been teaching Self Defense for many years. He was also traveling interstate and overseas regularly to hold seminars. In addition to instructing at his dojo, he was also teaching self-defense at many southern Tasmanian schools, as well as running fitness classes with the Greek Community. He will be deeply missed.