A Look into his EARLY DAYS
Bruce Lee was born Lee Jun Fan on November 27, 1940 in the Chinatown section of San Francisco, California. He was born in the hour of the dragon (between 6am and 8am) and in the year of the dragon. According to Chinese astrology, this was a powerful omen for a life that would have great impact on other people.
Bruce’s dad was a comedian and an actor, and his parents were touring with an opera company when he was born. Soon after his birth, the family moved to Hong Kong where he lived until he was 18 years old. As a child, he acted in over 20 movies and, in 1952, attended La Salle College.
When he lost a street fight with a gang, he began studying Wing Chun under Sifu Yip Man. His skills improved rapidly, and he never lost another fight. Since there was so much violence in Hong Kong, his parents decided to send him to California to get an education.
After living in San Francisco for a while, he moved to Seattle, where he enrolled in Edison Technical School. To support himself, he waited tables at a Chinatown restaurant and taught martial arts in a park.
In 1963, he opened two martial arts studios, and the next year, gave a demonstration of his skills at the International Karate Championships in Long Beach, California. He demonstrated his “One Inch Punch,” which is a punch which stops an inch from the opponent’s torso, followed by another punch that can propel an opponent backward several feet into the air.
Jay Sebring, who worked on the “Batman” TV series was so impressed that he put him in touch with Batman’s producer, William Dozier. Dozier invited Bruce to do a screen test in Los Angeles. At the age of 24, he got a part on the Green Hornet TV series. During this time, he fully developed his own martial arts style called Jeet Kune Do. It is also referred to as “The Way of the Intercepting Fist.”
Now the story begins,
While everything was going perfect, something unexpected happened. Arguably the world’s greatest fighter at that time died under mysterious circumstances at a young age of 32.
Rumour has it that a large section believed Lee was murdered by a secretive Chinese organization ‘Triad’ for unknown reasons. However, the actual cause of his death was ‘Cerebral Edema’.
Lee had been suffering from Cerebral Edema, a disease which causes swelling in the human brain leading to difficulty in breathing and sudden unusual behaviour. There have been times when he’d faint on movie sets.
On the day of his death, Bruce Lee had met producer Raymond Cho in Hong Kong for his next film, ‘Game of Death’. The meeting happened at around 4 PM and apparently, Lee had a severe headache in the evening. Lee’s friend and fellow actress, Betty Ting Pei, gave him an analgesic medicine which was a combination of two drugs – Aspirin and Meprobamate.
The same evening, Lee was supposed to have dinner with actor George Lazenby (James Bond fame) with an intention to make a film. When he did not get up for dinner, a doctor was called who took him to Queen Elizabeth Hospital where he was declared dead. According to the post-mortem report, Aspirin and Meprobamate had an allergic reaction and his brain’s size had increased by 13%.
Lee’s body was returned to Seattle, where it was eventually buried.
The world lost this legend way too soon.