Yes, I lost Fumio Toyoda-shihan of the Aikido association of america. His legacy lives on in many of his students. Though my encounter was brief, it was enough to stimulate me for a lifetime.
It is important that we Aikidoka strive to learn from the very few remaining masters that actually knew O-sensei personally such as Yasuo Kobayashi-shihan, T.K. Chiba-shihan, etc. Their mastery of the art of Aikido is beyond reproach and there is so much to learn from these iconic figures. It is very imortant to train under these legends while we can so we can transmit traditional Aikido properly.
I recently had the opportunity to train under Kobayashi-shihan and the man is nothing short of incredible. I had hit a sticking point in my training and in just one week with him, he not only broke me through my plateau but he carried to new heights all together!!! That is the difference between training under a master and some shmoe down the road who went to a couple of seminars and claims to tach Aikido. For this reason, I feel it is very important to become affiliated with an appropriate organization. Not only to be an accredited and ligitmatly recognized transmitter of the art, but to ensure that quality remains the highest standard!