For the very first time, Quest is featuring its ‘Student of the month’, and for the month of February our Student of the Month is Romeo Lobedecis, III!
‘Aeutto’ as he is known to his Quest family, was the Best Player in the Advance Level in the 58th Color Belt promotion test last December 20. This was no surprise as Aeutto is very dedicated to taekwondo, having competed in the Nationals last year in Minneapolis, winning gold in both poomsae and sparring in various tournaments and an active participant in Quest’s Competition Team. He is a dynamite in a small compact package!
So why Taekwondo? Let’s get to know more about Aeutto …
Auetto, how old are you now and at what age did you start taekwondo? — “I am 9 years old and I started taekwondo when I was 8 years old.”
How did you get the nickname ‘Aeutto’? — “My Dad nicknamed me after a fish, the catfish which is called “HITO” in Tagalog and it sounds like Aeutto (Ee-toh); maybe because I enjoy playing in the water and love swimming. Actually my real name is Romeo III, the same name as my dad’s.”
What is it that you like about taekwondo and what is your ultimate goal as a taekwondo athlete? —”I like taekwondo because I enjoy learning about how to protect myself from bad people. I also like learning new techniques in sparring, kicking, punching, exercising and Poomsae. Aside from that, it develops my self-confidence and discipline. Someday when I grow up, I’d like to compete in the Olympics and get a medal.”
Tell us about a peak moment in taekwondo, one that you are especially proud of and will never forget. — “When I competed at International Fight Showdown (IFS) last February 17, 2019 in Anaheim. That was the most exciting and memorable one because it was the first time I competed and I won 1st place in both Poomsae and sparring.”
In the tournaments you have competed in, what stands out the most for you that you would consider as the most challenging one? — ” When I first competed in the USAT Nationals in Minnesota last summer of 2019. I thought was going to win a medal in Poomsae and sparring, but I didn’t. That was the most challenging one, because I competed with the kids all over the US that were better and stronger than me. Even though I did not win any medal, still I’m glad that I experienced it. Actually, I am still looking forward to compete for the Nationals this coming summer in San Antonio, Texas.”
Other than being an avid taekwondo martial artist please share with us your other accomplishments outside of taekwondo. — “Every summer I compete for the Biathlon (swimming & running), swimming and diving together with my siblings in Long Beach. I got some medals and ribbons in those competitions that I joined in. And during summer time, I always enjoy swimming because I love the competitions in the pool with other kids from other part of Long Beach and Los Angeles. Other than that, I also completed my first Autumn Piano Recital last October 26, 2019 together with my siblings.”
What advice would you give a beginner student who wants to be a black belt someday? — “As a kid, I’d like them to stay cool, always be kind, follow the master’s instructions and always be respectful to parents, masters, teachers, siblings and friends. And always come on time to the practice, remember the skills in taekwondo and do not play around during class or training.”
What are your favorite things? — “My favorite thing is to play piano and play with my tablet. I also enjoy playing ROBLOX and watching YouTube. I still remember when I was 7 or 8 years old, I always played with my stuff toys and small toys and I talk with them like we were in YouTube Kids channel.”
How about pet peeves…what are things you just dislike? — “When people are making fun of me when I make mistakes or did not win a gold medal in the competition. And I do not like getting up early because we have to leave home by 6:00 AM to go to school.”
If you were a fictional character who or what would you be and why that character? — “I want to be Superman because he has cool powers and he stops criminals from robbing a bank or breaking out of jail.”
Please finish this sentence: “Most people don’t know that … I like to play the piano, join swimming competitions, enjoy biathlons (swimming and running), diving and go on vacations during summer: Las Vegas and winter in Lake Tahoe. I also enjoy skiing and playing with my tablet when I’m done with my homework.”
If your friends and family were to describe you, what adjectives would they use? — “ People describe me as funny, weird sometimes, loving, caring, helpful and above all loud and active because I cannot sit still.“
If there is one famous person you could spend the whole day with, who would that be, and what would you talk about? — “I would like to hang out with David Baszucki, the creator of ROBLOX. I just want to know how he developed the game.”
What do you think is the most important thing that young people these days should learn as they’re growing up? — “Kids as my age should learn how to enjoy the moment of being kid and do not spend too much time in their tablet or cellphone.”
What words of wisdom can you share with other young people your age? — “I want them to love their parents, be respectful, kind, don’t lie, always use kind words, be responsible kids and always pray for guidance.”
Are there other things you want the readers to know about ‘AEUTTO LOBEDECIS” that we haven’t asked you in this interview? —“I think, they don’t know that I get emotional about little things especially when I’m competing in sparring. I feel bad when I get a low score in Daedo practice. Also, when I grow up I want to become either a scientist in computer or a Math or Science Teacher; actually Math and Science are my favorite subjects in school.”
Last but not the least, who are the special people you want to thank for helping you develop your character and talent and for providing you with life-giving instructions? —“First of all I want to thank my Dad and Mom for always being there for me especially before, during and after competitions and training. Also my 2 sisters who are always there cheering for me whether I get a medal on not. Of course my Masters: Dean, Bobby and Kamille; they are always guiding me in every training and competition that I participated in. Lastly the Team Quest family for being there to support me. These people are the reason why I always come to Quest Taekwondo and why my skills in both sparring and poomsae are improving.”
What profound words and insight from our 9-year old Mr. Auetto Lobedecis! It is refreshing to interview a young man who can be very honest about what makes him tick. We can easily envision Aeutto in the 2028 Olympics here in Los Angeles; he’d be 17 years old by then, and would be incredibly seasoned in the martial arts of taekwondo. All we can say is: “GO FOR THE GOLD, AEUTTO!!”
Visit us again next month for another “Up Close and Personal” with one of our intriguing and astounding students.
If you’re in the South Bay area, swing by Quest Taekwondo and watch these amazing young Black Belts and future Black Belts train. We have every taekwondo and fitness program to suit every age group and physical profile. Check out our home page for new promotions and offers.
Follow us also on Facebook to get the most current news and updates!
Until then… “Don’t put a limit on anything. The more you dream, the further you get.” —Michael Phelps