Jun 1, 2014

Remembrances of two young friends who just died

This year I lost two good friends.  In February 2014, Jesus Alberto Valdes, our friend of over two decades died after a prolonged battle with cancer.  Beto had been our roommate in Cali and compañero at Fundación Habla/Scribe.  A few years after we left Colombia in 1995, Beto had to give up his full time work with social movements to drive a taxi to earn his living.  But he continued his engagement with social struggles and taught us so much about love, friendship, and humanity. 

In April 2014, another compañero, S. Bhupathy died prematurely and tragically. 

I met Bhupathy in 1991 on a wildlife management field course in China, and bumped into him again twenty years later.  In December last year, I contacted him when we went to Kerala for Robert's long anticipated trip there. He graciously and generously hosted us at SACON, sharing his knowledge of Indian ecology and herpetology unreservedly with us. 

Beto and Bhupathy were friends that I did not see regularly in the past, and had no hopes of seeing often in the future.  But they touched my life and made  not just my world, but the world a better place in their quiet, gentle way. 

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