One of the most sincere forms of respect is actually listening to what another has to say. Bryant H. McGill
JAY Atienza Razon, 64, was not in the group of my Filipino-Canadian friends who hosted a despedida party for me the night before I left Vancouver for Blaine, Washington on April 8, 2012, but he became one of my regular callers from Canada when I was already in the United States.
In my brief visits in Vancouver in 2008, 2009, 2010, I heard and read a lot about Jay Razon–both positive and negative–but we didnt know each other yet.
I was the editor of the Surrey-based Philippine Asian News Today (PNT) published by 1976 Montreal Olympian Reynaldo Rey Fortaleza when I first met Jay Razon, who came to our editorial office to submit a basketball story to sports editor Alex Mino.
Our second meeting was on December 21, 2011 during Jay Razons 56th birthday, which he celebrated on crutches, 12 days after undergoing a surgery for Achilles Tendon.
I got several calls from Jay Razon in August 2018, where he replayed an information that he was unfairly targeted and singled out without any due process.
He was referring to the advisory posted by the Consulate General of the Philippines in Vancouver, Canada on its website on July 30, 2018 which screamed, The Philippine Consulate General (PCG) in Vancouver advises the general public about the unauthorized and unlicensed recruitment of Filipino workers being conducted by Harvard Immigration.
Jay Razon, who owns the Harvard Immigration, protested the advisory and sought my help to clarify certain information which he claimed werent true. He said he had documents to back his story.
He remembered me because I believe in you, Alex. I know that you have many readers; I know that you are fair and balance and willing to air both sides of the coin. I respect you as a journalist.
Jay Razon admitted the issue faced by his immigration agency was against all odds because of some false information fed to the RP consulate but he was only asking to be given the opportunity to air my side.
I gave him the benefit of the doubt and lent him my ears.
In the spirit of fair play and balance reporting, I gave forlorn Jay Razon a space in my blogs and newspaper column. No strings attached.
I advised him to focus on news websites and not to respond to attacks by anyone in the social media because the slanderous comments have no substance and are only temporary; they dont have the depth and permanence–unlike the articles that appear in the news websites that surface online anytime when Googled and stay there permanently.
Jay Razon was the founder and president of the Filipino Plaza Society of British Columbia in Canada.
He was then advocating for the restoration of the Filipino Plaza, a landscaped park located in Vanness Avenue, west of SkyTrain’s Nanaimo Station in the city of Vancouver.
I heard a lot of opposition from other factions in the Filipino-Canadian community; there were those who believed in his leadership, while others doubted Jay Razons capability to pursue and finish the project, which needed a gargantuan budget.
Jay Razon, a retired nurse and civil engineer by profession, told me he was determined to prove his critics wrong despite the brickbats.
I learned from our common friend, Tom Choy, that Jay Razon died on March 28.
The Royal Canadian Mounted Police reported on that day the following:
This afternoon at 2:15 p.m., Burnaby RCMP and a number of other agencies including the Coast Guard, BC Emergency Health Services, Burnaby Fire Department, Coquitlam RCMP and the Vancouver Police Marine Unit responded to a report of an adult male kayaker who had capsized in the water at Barnet Marine Park and not resurfaced. At 3:20 p.m., the adult male kayaker was located deceased.
Jay Atienza Razon left too soon without any warning.
His demise came about 24 hours after he wrote Good reporting, Alex, his last comment on the live report I made in the Times Square in New York City posted on my Facebook account. Rest in peace, Jay.
(The author, who is now based in New York City, used to be the editor of two local dailies in Iloilo)