05 May 2009
Victor Ordonez (+)
When it rains, it pours. Augusto Boal died 2 May, as did Al Robles. Yesterday (4 May), multilingual writer Victor Ordonez died in Makati, Philippines, of a lingering illness. He was not primarily a writer, having written only one novel (in English), but his work at UNESCO in Paris was crucial to the development of writing in many countries. He spoke several languages (I don't know exactly how many, but I saw him talking to delegates in a UN conference in their own languages) and most likely read several more. He spearheaded a number of innovative movements in education, not just in the world (he spent much of his later life in international circles), but in the Philippines, where he served in various capacities in government and the private sector. He was my friend, as he was a friend to countless others, especially writers.