Rest In Peace Master Alexander Lim Co – April 12th, 2016

Rest In Peace Master Alexander Lim Co – April 12th, 2016

Alex Co - Author Pic - 200 b

Alexander Lim Co was a living treasure in the arts of Chinese kung-fu. In fact, no name is more synonymous with Kung-Fu in the Philippines than Alexander Co. He spearheaded the Chin Wu Club in Manila, wrote the first kung-fu book ever published in the Philippines, and published the country’s first martial arts magazine, simply titled “Martial Arts Magazine.” Co has studied a dozen different kung-fu styles, was an “in-door” disciple of Ngo Cho Kun’s late grandmaster Tan Ka Hong, and has studied Seven Star Praying Mantis and Hung-gar under Grandmaster Shakespeare Chan, Wu style Tai Chi Chuan under the late Master John Hu Chuan Hai, and Hsin-I Liu Ha Pa Fa under Master David Chan.

Alexander Co was the Advising Grandmaster of The International Beng Hong Athletic Association. He has served as Chairman of the Philippine-Chinese Beng Kiam Athletic Association and the Tsing Hua Ngo Cho Kung-fu Center and as Vice-chairman of the Hsin-I Society of Internal Arts. In addition to dozens of articles featured in such magazines as Martial Arts Magazine, Rapid Journal, Inside Kung-Fu, Martial Arts Illustrated, and Martial Arts Legends. Grandmaster Co has written three books: Secrets of Seven Star Praying Mantis, The Way of Ngo Cho Kun and Five Ancestor Fist Kung-Fu, and is translator of The Bible of Ngo Cho Kun. He also filmed a series of instructional videos “The Essence of Ngo Cho Kun” and “The Essence of Seven Star Praying Mantis” for Unique Publications Video.



Ronnie Ricketts

I was saddened to hear of the passing of a good friend and a great master, Alex Co . He was an amazing influence in the lives of our Bakbakan brothers. Our sincerest condolences to the family and may you rest in peace, Master Alex!


‎Lance Velez‎

The loss of Master Alex is a loss to the world of martial arts. He knew so much and shared his knowledge with those who showed Interest, with no reservation , he was a true master of his art and I am sad that I wasn’t able to spend more time with him… It hurts that I no longer have his counsel and insight when I have questions the thought that we will no longer have our conversations is heartbreaking. I will do my best to maintain and master what you taught me so in my own small way I can preserve the art of Ngo Cho … Rest in peace Master Alex … I will miss you …


Mark Wiley‎ 

It is with a heavy heart that I mourn the passing of one of my best friends, big brother and kung-fu master, Sifu Alex Co. He passed at 10:34 PM Manila time, April 12, 2016. His kind and loving heart and openness in sharing his passion for all martial arts with all people was unmatched. He is one of the legends of the Philippine martial arts masters, who brought all together from every discipline.

He suffered much these past years with heart troubles, kidney failure, diabetes, digital amputation… But his drive to keep documenting and spreading the arts he loved was unstoppable.

My son, Alex, is named in his honor and forever I will treasure his memory in my heart.

 It is with a heavy heart that I mourn your passing, Sifu Alex, you are one of my best friends, big brother, father and kung-fu master. Our long relationship is deeply embedded in my heart and I am struggling with not being able to call you and talk or come for a visit. You are among the most important people in my life and I can’t imagine my future without you here.

Rest in peace.






Doran Sordo

Master Alex Co was an exceptional human being. He was one of the best friends of my master, Christopher Ricketts. He was very strict when he would be teaching us. Always keen on the details. It was because of Master Topher that I met, got to know, and learned extensively from Master Alex. He was so selfless in his teaching. Breaking from the norm, because of his friendship and trust for Master Topher and the students he would bring by. He was such a kind man. Soft spoken and yet, powerful. I will miss him greatly. He was a cornerstone to our Bakbakan Brotherhood. On one of the last conversations I had with Master Topher, he told me to never stop learning. He mentioned only two people. Master Alex was one of them. Rest in peace, Master. Thank you so much for teaching me. I will never forget it, or you. Paalam Po.


Jun Nunez

This picture was taken by Grandmaster Topher Rickets of Bakbakan. With me is Grandmaster Edgar Sulite of Lameco Escrima, Master HuTuan Hai of Wu Tai Chi Chuan, and Master Alex Co of Ngo Cho Kun. It’s sad to know that I am the only one left with the passing of my friend Alex. Goodbye my friend


Felipe P. Jocano Jr.

With deep sorrow, I mourn the passing of my kung-fu teacher and friend, Sifu Alexander He was one of the kindest, most generous and caring men I have had the privilege of meeting and learning from. He not only taught martial arts, he was also an example of the true martial arts master, capable of wielding tremendous power, and at the same time, remaining kind, gentle and humble. Such was his character that he was friends with and was highly respected by, everyone within the Philippine martial arts community.

I miss you po, sir. You were always kind, generous and constantly encouraging to me, the least of your students. You showed me that true kung-fu was not only physical ability but also the development of character. I will always treasure everything you taught me.

I have previously posted this picture below. This is of me and Mark Wiley with Sifu Alex at Sifu’s house in Mandaluyong. Taken last year.









More on Master Alexander Lim Co:

Sifu Alex Co Remembers Punong Guro Edgar Sulite. *Excerpted from the new book, Lameco Eskrima: The Legacy of Edgar Sulite.

Sifu Alex Co Remembers Guro Edgar Sulite

*The following is excerpted from the new book, Lameco Eskrima: The Legacy of Edgar Sulite.

Sulite Orehenal Group (35) Edgar G. Sulite, backyard, Los Angeles (1995)I

first met Edgar Sulite in the early 1980s under very unique circumstances. I was invited by Yuli Romo, an Arnis grandmaster, to attend a tournament sponsored by Master Picate. Yuli told me that the grandmaster considered the “King of Kings” in the field of Arnis, named Antonio “Tatang” Ilustrisimo, shall be present in the tournament. Usually, I don’t attend tournaments because I find them boring, as I am already used to their routines. But this time, curiosity got the better of me; I desired to meet the grand master touted to be the king of Arnis. Ironically, as even in kung-fu events, which is my field, I am hardly present; but in this event, with its system then alien to me, I was very visible.

I asked my best buddy, Topher Ricketts, to come along with me. It was when we reached the tournament site that we found out that Yuli will challenge and fight a young master from Cagayan de Oro, one of the provinces of the Mindanao region. Their fight will be the main highlight of the event, using live sticks and without the use of body armor. Unfortunately, their anticipated fight did not push through, as Master Picate failed to come up with the prize money. Considering that the renowned masters were already in the venue, it was decided that there would be a demonstration where each master would be presented. In the event, I was introduced by Yuli to the great “Tatang” Ilustrisimo. I cannot remember the other demonstrators, but what I vividly remembered were the ones presented by Grandmaster “Tatang” Ilustrisimo and Ka Piryong Lanada of the Lanada Style. “Tatang” did the single baston, and Ka Piryong did the double baston. The reason why I singled out these two was simply because they were the ones I knew; “Tatang” having been introduced to me there by Yuli, and Lanada, who had been featured in Inside Kung-Fu magazine through the workings of his students in the U.S. So basically, knowledge wise at that time, I could not distinguish the versatility and salient points of their different styles.

After the tournament, Yuli introduced me to Edgar Sulite, whom I noticed to be very well mannered, respectful and who projected an aura of self-confidence, though still younger than most masters. I had just finished publication of my first book on Ngo Cho Kun, and I was aware that there as a demand for reference materials for the ever-growing market of Arnis practitioners. During those times, the only available book on Arnis was the one published by Remy Presas.

Grab your copy of Lameco Eskrima: The Legacy of Edgar Sulite here.

GM Jose Diaz Caballero and De Campo 1-2-3 Orehenal (5)

In the course of our conversation, publishing a book on Arnis came up. I thought a book on the art would be a great idea as the art of Arnis, though well-known in the Visayas and Mindanao regions, was then not so well-known in the metropolis of Manila and its neighboring cities. In fact, it was widely believed that Arnis was personified and represented only by the style of Remy Presas, who had established quite a name in this field, by virtue of his book. I found the young Edgar Sulite very skilled, educated and very passionate about Arnis. I gave my business card to him to pay me a visit, and sure enough, the following week, he appeared at my doorstep, presented me with a manuscript of his work, and was indeed looking for a publisher.

This started our business and personal relationship, and together with Topher Ricketts, we three established a lifelong friendship. Edgar would come to my office almost every day to discuss his book and demonstrate his Arnis knowledge to us. I would in turn expose him to the field of kung-fu, sharing my knowledge of Ngo Cho, Hung-gar, Praying Mantis, internal strength training, while Topher would delve into full-contact, pugilistic fighting with boxing basics and scientific training methods. So, in essence, we three became brothers in the martial arts, and at nighttime, would regularly practice at the penthouse of my residence in Makati.

Since the three of us were in constant company, I got to introduce Edgar and Topher to the different kung-fu masters, and Edgar also utilized some internal kung-fu techniques in his Lameco Eskrima, which explains his seemingly internal strength. I also learned Edgar’s Arnis style: Lameco. So the three of us each had knowledge in Arnis, Kung-fu, pugilistic fighting with specific strength on our own individual systems.

The publication of Edgar Sulite’s book was a great challenge to me. First, we had to change his original manuscript to be able to appeal to the readers. As I was more experienced in the field of book publishing I suggested we incorporate many items to make the book attractive enough to the readers, like putting its history, calisthenics, basics and fundamentals, strides, attack and defense techniques, closed inter-relations between a stick and dagger, plus introduction to some well-known masters. The latter was to expose these masters so their students would like to have their own copies, like a sort of marketing strategy. I published his first book with the title Secrets of Arnis.

Grab your copy of Lameco Eskrima: The Legacy of Edgar Sulite here.


During those times, I normally traveled back and forth to Hong Kong, to buy stuff for my store, a hobby shop which specialized in model kits and radio control items from Japan and the U.S. Hong Kong, being an Asian free port, was much cheaper to buy goods than to import from their sources. I tried to find a distributor for Edgar Sulite’s Arnis book, but unfortunately I was told the market was not yet ripe for that kind of book, and instead was advised to come up with a book on knife techniques, which can be more profitable. I was able to find a worldwide distributor for a book on knife techniques, so after Edgar’s first book, we immediately came up with his second book, a book on knife techniques titled Advanced Balisong. Both books were distributed and well-received locally, and got positive reviews from practitioners. Unfortunately, the Hong Kong distributor I got for the knife book encountered domestic problems, and was forced to close his business, so the worldwide distribution of the book was thwarted, and instead we relied on National Bookstore, the Philippine’s primary book seller and distributor.

As a martial arts practitioner and publisher, I was greatly intrigued and mystified by the art of Arnis, with this style having no definitive roots. Where did this style originate? From what particular place? Although nobody can specifically say something very definite, I noticed that all styles have three similar movement concepts, although there are certain variations. These three are always present in any Arnis system, so there might be only one origin. These three are the concepts of doce pares, singko teros and siete pares. All Arnis styles rotate on these three concepts, although by now, there might already be numerous deductions and additions, as normally any martial arts system is accorded different adaptations by the master to make it particularly unique and his very own. Arnis styles are commonly defined and named after its master, so we have the Ilustrisimo style, the Lanada style, the Presas style, etc. while some still retain their ‘generic’ names like Lameco style, Balintawak style, Modern Arnis, etc. Because of the many questions in my mind regarding Arnis, I told Edgar to go to the different provinces and meet the prominent masters, interview them, get whatever knowledge is available, and delve deeper. With all provinces scattered around, I financed Edgar’s odyssey to these local destinations. He compiled all the data, which became the contents for our third book, Masters of Arnis. In this book was the very first time these masters were heard about, as most were obscure and secretive.

As Edgar’s name rose to prominence since the publication of his first book, he dreamt of hitting it big in the U.S., but the difficulty of getting a U.S. visa even for a short stint seemed impossible. When Topher went to the U.S. to conduct some clinics and seminars, he brought with him copies of Edgar’s book Secrets of Arnis. At that time (I cannot remember the exact year), Topher conducted a seminar for Richard Bustillo, and gave him a copy of the book. Somehow, Dan Inosanto got a hold of the book, and called the Philippines for Edgar Sulite. Edgar could not believe his ears when he received the call. Dan Inosanto expressed willingness to meet him, which all the more stoked Edgar’s desire to try his luck in the U.S., having an extended family which relied on him for support.

Grab your copy of Lameco Eskrima: The Legacy of Edgar Sulite here.

Punong Guro Edgar G. Sulite Germany (5)


After numerous attempts to secure a U.S. visa, Edgar finally got one but with a big letdown: his visa was only a single entry visa, good for 30 days, and in this short time, he cannot come up with the sufficient finances to fund his travels and expenses abroad, so in true blue brotherly passion, I advanced his royalties to pay for his tickets, and advised him to solicit contributions from his students to raise money for his living expenses. He was able to land in the U.S., the fabled land of milk and honey, and in no time, with his skills and dedication, carved a niche for himself in the field of Arnis, and as they say, the rest is history.

With Edgar’s knowledge and determination, in no time, he became well-known for his style, and was able to secure his place in the U.S., bringing his whole family from the Philippines to settle in the U.S. With his prominence came the desire to pay back, to help all Arnis masters in the Philippines. He planned to come back every now and then to bring U.S. enthusiasts to study under Filipino masters and meet them personally, and giving income to these native masters, who by then were already old and have passed on their knowledge to their younger generations. But fate intervened and cut short this dream. In one of his homecoming seminars, he suffered an excruciating headache and dizziness during the session, sat down, and collapsed in the arms of Topher Ricketts, while I, at home, was scheduled to see him at the gym in the afternoon.



He died of aneurysm in his late thirties, so young and accomplished. Perhaps the books we published, all three of them (Secrets of Arnis, Advanced Balisong, Masters of Arnis), all happened for a reason: they would serve as his legacy, a reminder to all Arnis practitioners of his unequaled passion for the arts. Constant reminders that although he is already gone, his legacy will forever live on in his books. Fate willed us to meet each other, so we could work as a team to publish his works. We were brothers in the martial arts, and it gave me great joy to know that some of his students pay homage to him by continuing his legacy, the Edgar Sulite Lameco style of Eskrima (the Visayan preferred term for Arnis). As the founder/forerunner of the Lameco style, Edgar Sulite’s name and memory shall forever be remembered for all lifetimes. Here is one person who has shown unequaled, exemplary passion and dedication to his craft. Not that he and our brother Topher have both passed on, I am saddened that my brothers and our penthouse training will have to wait for our eventual reunion.


Grab your copy of Lameco Eskrima: The Legacy of Edgar Sulite here.

Lameco Eskrima Cover

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Heart Bypass Fundraiser for Grandmaster Alexander Co SEPTEMBER 17, 2015.

Heart Bypass Fundraiser for Grandmaster Alexander Co

SEPTEMBER 17, 2015.

MAster Alex Co

Heart Bypass Fundraiser for Grandmaster Alexander Co

Donate Here:

Alex Co is synonymous with martial arts in the Philippines. He is grandmaster of Ngo Cho and Tang Lang, owner of the beloved Squadron Shop, publisher of books and magazines, and supporter of all teachers and styles. Master Co has done so much for so many, never asking for anything in return. His life has been filled with friends and masters and robust health and financial stability. He has been my mentor for over 20 years.

Now, he is sick, he is poor, he is weak, and his life is touch and go each month.

Master Co suffers from multiple morbidities: Heart Disease, Diabetes, Low Blood Pressure, and Kidney Failure. He can no longer urinate. He has had several surgeries in the past few years. Stents in his heart, stents in his legs, and he is in dialysis 5 hours a day, 4 days per week. He recently almost had his legs amputated.

The thing is, Master Co could have a kidney transplant, except his heart it too weak. It is only at 25% function. But he cannot afford the heart bypass to make him strong enough for the kidney transplant. He has spent all his retirement on temporary procedures to keep him alive. But now the doctors told him he has a 50% chance of suffering heart attack each time he is connected to the dialiysis machine. And they have recommended another heart stent. He cannot afford it.

So now, the most generous and knowledgeable teacher in Manila, who has been mentor to many and financial supporter of many passed masters, like Tatang Ilustrisimo, Edgar Sulite and more… is at the threshold of life and death. One day feels ok and the next he is flattened and swollen and unable to breath and in need of more temporary surgeries.

Those who know and love Master Co, who is only in his mid-60s, do not want this legend to pass from this earth, We ask for your help. He needs your support. A few dollars, a hundred dollars… whatever donation you can manage.  If we can raise enough for the heart bypass, the docs say he will be strong enough for the kidney transplant, and perhaps live another 15 years. If we can’t do it in time, there may be no more time.

Please help, as you can. Please.

Donate Here:


A word from

Grandmaster Alex Co is a longtime practitioner of the Philippine Warrior Arts. He is also a member of Bakbakan International and has published several book on the subject, most notably the books on Lameco Eskrima by Punong Guro Edgar Sulite. Grandmaster Alex is a living Martial Arts treasure of the Philippines.

Eskrima Documentary Series – Teaser Trailer: Ang Dangal Ng Lahi (Pride)

Eskrima Documentary Series – Teaser Trailer: Ang Dangal Ng Lahi (Pride)

Ang Dangal ng Lahi (Pride) is a series of short documentaries about the Warrior Arts of the Philippines commonly known as Eskrima, Arnis and Kali. The focus will be arts and organizations of Bakbakan Philippines, Ilustrisimo and Lameco Eskrima.

Director: Tim Fredianelli
General Consultant: Dino Flores
Kapisanang Mandirigma Productions

Release Date: 2015

For more information go to:

© 2015 Kapisanang Mandirigma Productions, All Rights Reserved.


Master Christopher Ricketts reflects on how he met Punong Guro Sulite through Master Alex Co

Master Christopher Ricketts reflects on how he met Punong Guro Sulite through Master Alex Co

(Q) You were a close friend of PG Edgar Sulite. How did you meet him and do you have any fond memories you would like to share?

Edgar G. Sulite was one of my closest friends. I met him through another close friend of mine, Alex Co, a pioneer publisher in the Philippines of martial arts books and magazines. Alex asked me to check whether Edgar was the real McCoy because Edgar wanted to discuss the publication of a book. After meeting Edgar, I reported that he was indeed the real thing and the rest is history. Alex ended up publishing all three of Edgar’s books: Secrets of Arnis, Advanced Balisong and Masters of Arnis, Kali and Eskrima.

The Masters of Anis, Kali and Eskrima was a landmark book because it was the first time a researcher traveled throughout the entire Philippines to research the art and publish it in a book. It revealed many relatively unknown systems to the world and opened many doors for future researchers and practitioners. I am happy to have been a participant in bringing these projects to light.


Extact from Grandmaster Christopher ’Topher’ Ricketts Interview
Research & questions by David Foggie Interviewed by Dino Flores. Answers by Master Ricketts given in Tagalog, Translation by Dino Flores.  Interview commenced 12 th February 2006 and conducted over a span of three months by Dino Flores in Los Angeles, California U.S.A.
To read full interview:
More on Master Alex Co:
Master Alex Co and Master Christopher Ricketts, Five Ancestor Fist Kung-Fu: The Way of Ngo Cho Kun, Bakbakan Philippines,
Master Alex Co and Master Christopher Ricketts in “Five Ancestor Fist Kung-Fu: The Way of Ngo Cho Kun” book by Master Alex.
Below are the three legendary books by Punong Guro Sulite published by Master Alex Co. Master Ricketts also played a major role in making the project come to life.
The books are: Masters of Kali, Arnis and Eskrima, The Secrets of Arnis and Advanced Balisong – Filipino Butterfly Knife.
These books influenced most writers on the Warrior Arts of the Philippines that came after it. Many of Punong Guro Sulites original photos of the old Masters can even be seen in some of the books by Master Rey Galang and Mark Wiley.
Punong Guro Edgar Sulite masters-of-arnis Lameco Eskrima Punong Guro Edgar Sulite masters-of-arnis Lameco EskrimaPunong Guro Edgar Sulite secrets-of-arnis  Lameco Eskrima Punong Guro Edgar Sulite secrets-of-arnis  Lameco EskrimaPunong Guro Edgar Sulite  advanced-balisong Lameco Eskrima Punong Guro Edgar Sulite  advanced-balisong Lameco Eskrima 

Punong Guro Edgar G. Sulite, Master Christopher Ricketts,Master Alex Co

Left ot right: PG Edgar G. Sulite, GM Tony Diego, GM Christopher Ricketts, GM Rey Galang, Tom Dy and GM Alex Co. Seated Left to right: Rodney Wilson, Steve Tarani and Dodong Sta. Iglesia. This is one of the last known photos of  PG Edgar G. Sulite before his passing due to a stroke in 1997.

Bakbakan Philippines Diego Sulite Ilustrisimo Ricketts Alex Co

From left to right: Master Tony Diego, PG Edgar G. Sulite, Master Roland Dantes, GM Antonio “Tatang” Illustrisimo, Master Christopher Ricketts and Master Alex Co.  Philippines circa 1989. Legendary Members of Bakbakan Philippines.

Archives: Ilustrisimo Seminar Sunday, September 27, 1998

Sunday, September 27, 1998 from 10:00am to 4:00pm
In Association With Bakbakan International

Master Christopher Ricketts (Philippines)
Master Reynaldo Galang (New Jersey)
Master Eugene Pelegrin (Vancouver)
Sifu Alex Co (Philippines)

A special weekend seminar will be open to the general public and will be conducted by Sifu Alex Co on the arts of Ngo Cho Kun and Praying Mantis Ku and by Masters Christopher Ricketts, Rey Galang and Eugene Pelegrin on Bakbakan Kali Ilustrisimo and Sagasa Kickboxing.

The workshop fee is $25. Certificate of attendance will be given to each participant.

Don’t miss this rare opportunity to train and learn from these world renowned instructors and close affiliates of Lameco Eskrima International – Sulite Orehenal Group.

Hilton Woodland Hills
6360 Canoga Avenue
Woodland Hills, California 91367
Bring eskrima sticks, training swords and knives.