John T. Battalana ’69

John T. Battalana ’69 died on May 25, 2015 in Jakarta, Indonesia.

(The following was provided by Friends of Nepal Website in December 2018:)

John T. Battalana ’69

John Battalana was an agriculture volunteer in Nepal-38 from 1973 to 1977. Prior to serving in Nepal, John served for two years in India, where he met his wife Aruna. John was a history graduate of Bowdoin College and history and politics buff throughout his life. With a broad and deep knowledge of many subjects, he was a master of academic dialogue as well as an exceptional raconteur.

John loved people and everyone loved John–his broad grin, his baritone voice, and his hearty laugh. He bubbled over with gregarious energy, engaging all he met with his distinct voice and infectious laugh. John was also a favorite of new PCVs as a cultural and technical counselor

John was raised in Long Island, New York and spent summers working on a dairy farm in Maine. He went to Carle Place High School, where he was president of his class and captain of his football team. In Nepal he teamed up with fellow PCV and former high-school football rival John Daurio to beat the Embassy and Marine Corps in the Bicentennial Thanksgiving Football game at Phora Durbar.

John spent significant time in Tibetan refugee camps in Pokhara, frequented Tibetan establishments in Kathmandu, and was especially close to a number of Tibetans in Kathmandu. The name Battalana was heard by nationals as “Bhote Lama” and that became his nickname to all of us in Peace Corps Nepal. It translates roughly as Tibetan priest.

After Peace Corps, John and Aruna settled in New York City for several years. John joined Chase Manhattan Bank’s international division and spent 20 years on assignments in Southeast Asia. Later, John was employed by Merrill-Lynch Investment Bank with postings in London, Indonesia and Tokyo. John settled in Indonesia in semi-retirement. Rest in Peace, John.

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