Florencio Campomanes, condolences from FIDE President and others Print
Wednesday, 05 May 2010 06:05

On behalf of the International Chess Federation, FIDE Presidential Board and myself, I wish to express my most sincere condolences to the family, the National Chess Federation of the Philippines and numerous fans of this great man on the unfortunate passing away of the Honorary FIDE President and my dearest friend Florencio Campomanes.

He was known to the entire chess community as Campo – a personification and symbol of superior style, wisdom, diplomatic talent, brilliant professionalism and deep integrity. I had the greatest respect for him and will miss playing chess with him, his generous nature and sharing his remarkable sense of humor.

For me, you will always remain in my heart. We will never forget what you have done for chess. You always served faithfully to this clever game and could save the chess world from splitting. You are a big loss to the chess world.

I join his family, his wife and children in mourning.

With deepest Sympathy,
Kirsan Ilyumzhinov
President of FIDE
Head of the Republic of Kalmykia

From National Chess Federation of the Philippines

We have lost an institution. It is a great loss for Philippine chess and for world chess. He was a man who dedicated his whole life to the advancement of chess.

Prospero A. Pichay, Jr.
Chairman / President
National Chess Federation of the Philippines

From Asian Chess Federation

Please extend our condolences to the family of Florencio Campomanes.

Campo raised Asian chess to great heights. His work lives on in Asia and in the chess world.

Thank you Campo.

Sheikh Sultan bin Khalifah Al Nahyan

From Turkish Chess Federation

I have just learnt that the father of the World chess, Honorary President Mr.Florencio Campomanes has passed away.

Considering what he had contributed to World chess, and to Philippines, and to all us, I want to express my deep condolences for this important lost.

On behalf of Turkish Chess Federation and myself, I wish patient to his Family, and to Philippine Chess Federation and to all World chess.

We will make a ceremony in Turkey in very next chess event on his memorial for respect.

Best regards,

Gens Una Sumus…
Ali Nihat YAZICI

From Malaysian Chess Federation

On behalf of the Malaysian Chess fraternity, it is with sadness that we send this condolence to the family of the late Campomanes.

He was a leader among men and the king on the chess board. He was a friend of Malaysian Chess.

Thank you, Campo. May you rest in peace.

Dato' Tan Chin Nam, Tan Sri Ramli Ngah Talib, Hamid, Laurence How, Quah Seng Sun, Lim Chong & Victor Vijiarungam

From New Zealand Chess Federation

I have just been made aware of the sad passing of FIDE Honorary President Florencio Campomanes. Would you please pass on our sincere condolences to officials at FIDE and also to the executive of the Philippines Chess Federation.

I first met Campo in 1977 when he came to Auckland as Team Captain of the Philippines team to compete in the Asian Teams Championship and remember his great enthusiasm and passion for the game taking on everyone in blitz chess. I also bumped into him on several occasions at chess events around the world and last spoke to him at the Dato Tan Chess Festival in Kuala Lumpur in August last year.

He will long be remembered as the driving force behind Asian and World chess during the the 1970's and 80's.

Kind regards
Paul Spiller
President of NZ Chess Federation

It is very sad to learn of the passing of our friend and great supporter of chess.

I well remember his friendship from when I first met Campo in Hong Kong at the zonal in the early 1980’s, and his advice to me during the late 1990’s when the Oceania zone was created.

He will be sadly missed, and my thoughts are with you at this time as you deal with the loss of a very close friend.

Best wishes
Michael Freeman

From International Committee of Silent Chess

The death of Florencio Campomanes, Honorary President of FIDE (International Chess Federation) struck my heart. He was a President of FIDE from 1982 to 1995 and as a player has represented the Philippines in four editions of the FIDE Chess Olympiad.
The ICSC President and the ICSC Board Member send my deepest condolences to the family of Campomanes.

Michele Visco
President of International Committee of Silent Chess

From Armenian Chess federation

Armenian Chess Federation, all the Armenian chess players and chess lovers are deeply saddened on the death of the great chess organizer, FIDE Honorary President Florencio Campomanes.
Mr. Campomanes was very well known in Armenia. He has been in our country for many times and had a lot of relatives here.
Please extend our deepest sympathy to his wonderful family. May we all find the strength and courage to get through the days ahead.

With sincere simpathy,
Armenian Chess Federation

I was deeply saddened to learn of the death of my good friend, FIDE Honorary President Florencio Campomanes and I would like to express my sincere sadness and condolences to the world of chess and members of his family at this difficult time. I hope that his family will find peace and comfort in knowing that his suffering is over and that his just rewards await him.
My thoughts and prayers will be with his family.

Vanik Zakarian
FIDE Honorary Vice-President

I condole on the death of the FIDE Honorary President, Florencio Campomanes.
During his many years in chess, his dedication and selfless nature was always something that many others could only hope to attain and all who knew him regarded him with great respect and admiration. He helped the chess move forward in great strides and his efforts and contributions will never be forgotten.
Campo was very well known in Armenia where he has been frequently.
Please, convey my heartfelt condolences to the relatives of the deceased.

Gaguik Oganessian
President, FIDE Zone 1.5
Adviser for Chess Media Project, FIDE

From Nepal Chess Association

My deep condolence for the demise of the Ex.Fide President Mr.Florencio Campomanes.

We never forget his contribution towards the growth of global chess.

Rajesh Hari Joshi

We are in great sadness knowing that Honorary FIDE President, Florencio Campomanes has passed away. Please convey my condolences to his family. Honorary FIDE President Campomanes was true friend of Nepal Chess and myself.

With Regards.
Bhawani Limbu

From Norwegian Chess Federation

I was informed by the Turkish Chess Federation of your great loss. Campomanes was a very important part of the chess family.

Our thoughts are with his family and many friends around the world. He will be remembered for his great work for the whole chess world. Please accept our deepest condolances.

Jøran Aulin-Jansson
Norwegian Chess Federation

I have received the sad news regarding Campo and it gives an opportunity to look back on the numerous occasions the last 20 years where I have had the pleasure to work with this extraordinary man. Not always did we see things the same way and some battles we fought were tough, but still we managed to maintain a good relationship in the best interest of chess.

I have seldom come across a person of Campo’s strength, intellect and wisdom and he will always stand out from the crowd of chess leaders. Because of his work, chess is now organized in almost every corner of the world, and enjoys the respect and admiration this great game deserves. The first time we met was during the Open Norwegian Championship in 1983 where he participated as a player, and with success as he shared 2nd place without losing a single game. I was then a young arbiter and little did I know that our paths would cross so many times later.

The Chess World has lost its great leader and since Campo was “one of a kind” we will never see his like again.

Oslo, 3 May 2010
Morten Sand
IA, Former FIDE Vice President

From Indonesian Chess Federation

On behalf of the Indonesian Chess Community I would like to express my condolences. May his soul go to heaven with his belief. And to the family may the Lord give them strength.

Utut Adianto
Deputy President

From Ghana Chess Association

Our hearts bled as we learnt with shock the death of Florencio Campomanes.
This was one man who did so much for Ghana Chess during his tenure as FIDE President.

Campo as he is affectionately called was very happy to see us in Dresden, Germany.
He received us warmly and shared many memories with us on his visit to Ghana (the first and only by a sitting FIDE President).

Ghana Chess has lost a true friend.

Ghana Chess is dedicating its next competition (coming on on May 22, 2010) to the memory of Mr. Florencio Campomanes.

Please accept our condolence.

Eddie Thompson
Vice Chairman of Ghana Chess Association

From Boris Spassky

Please accept my sincere condolences on the occasion of passing away Mr. Florencio Campomanes. I have always cherished correct and friendly relations with Florencio, and during the political opposition between Korchnoi and Karpov he showed outstanding diplomatic talent. He managed to preserve the chess world from its split. Bagio 1978 and his further Presidency are evidence to this.

Boris V. Spassky
10th World Champion

From Arab Chess Federation

On behalf of the Arab Chess Federation, and Arab Board members I am sending my deep sadness and sincere condolences to FIDE family on the death of the FIDE Honorary President, Florencio Campomanes, who pass away this week.
He was a great man how developed chess in many countries especially in Arab region. He was a friend of us as well known in Arab Countries especially of Emirates.
I would like to express my sincere sadness and condolences to his family.

Ibrahim Al Bannai
President of Arab Chess Federation

From GM Dr. Wong Meng Kong

I last met Campo in September 2009 in Manila when he came for the closing ceremony of the GMA cup.

He was in good spirits, had fully recovered from the Turkish car accident, but then already had prostate cancer which had spread, so he decided against spending much of his limited finances on expensive but probably ineffective drugs, wanting to pass something on to his family.

We'll miss his wit, his domineering presence, and his passion for developing Asian chess.

From Dr. Andrzej Filipowicz

Campo was the best FIDE President in the history. He made so much for chess and FIDE. I respected him very much.
We met each other in the 1960 during the chess Olympiad in Leipzig.

We start be friends in the 1966 Olympiad in Havana. His room was close to mine and we played first blitz games. Later on I played many hundred blitz games with him, in Poland, even in my home, in Argentine (1992), drinking even three botles of wine during games and also in many other countries.

I had with him a lot of meetings official and private. I liked very much to discuss with him on many matters.. Sometimes we had the different opinions expressing them quite sharp, but I remember well that after exchanging some different conceptions, we still were good friends.

Last time I saw him in Dresden, during Chess Olympiad, I was sitting with him on the stage and talking a few times.

He called to me many times during many years just to say a few words or clarify some questions.

My last conversation was in June 2009 by the phone, just before the FIDE PB in Krakow. He called to me twice and I called once to talk about his arrival to Krakow. But he was already too sick to travel.

I lost a good friend and we lost the most clever chess Organizer in the World. He was also a fantastic speaker and an actor. He was a real leader of the Chess World many years, over 20 I think.

Andrzej Filipowicz

From Georgian Chess Federation

Passed away the World movement’s famous representative, the honour President of the World Chess Federation (FIDE) Florencio Campomanes.
As the big chess manager Florencio Campomanes input an important a lot of share in development of chess popularization in the World.
The Georgian Chess Federation on behalf of legendary chess players is very sorry because of death of Campomanes and is sending its condolence to his family.

With the Best Regards
Giorgi Giorgadze

From Continental President for America Mr. Jorge Vega

With deep worry I received the news of Campo passing away. Although it was expected it was a shock for me.
Campo was the spearhead that boomed chess to a really planetary level, it is impossible to write chess history without mentioning him.
He understood the way to do it, supported a lot of small and "weak" federations through CACDEC program and let them to join the top, scores of titleholders coming entered the FRL in a way that was impossibe to think in the past.
Perhaps his biggest sucsses was to show that FIDE Presidence could be won by a member of a small Federation.
As a close friend of him I shared the good and bad moments, his 1982 campaign, the division of chess and the aftermath.
I hereby express my deepest condolence to his family being sure that he will remain forever in our thoughts.

Jorge Vega
Continental President for America

From Chess Federation of Sri Lanka

This is to convey our deepest Sympathy to the family and the National Chess Federation of Philippines on late Mr. Campomanes. He is a man who made a great sacrifice towards the improvement of the noble game in Asia as well as in the world. I still have memories how he treated us even when we were young in the 30th Chess Olympiad in Manila.

On be half of the Chess Federation of Sri Lanka and the entire Chess population of Sri Lanka we wish that he may find NIBBANA, which should be the ultimate solution as our load Buddha showed for the human life which is full of worries.

Luxman Wijesuriya
Chess Federation of Sri Lanka

From Chinese Chess Association

Chinese Chess Association is very sad to learn that FIDE Honorary President, Florencio Campomanes has passed away. Mr. Campomanes is a great friend of China and respected by us greatly. He has helped China a lot when he was FIDE President. We will remember him forever.

Mr. Campomanes death is a great loss to chess world. Please transfer our condolence to his family and the Philippine Chess Federation.

From Macau Chess Federation

In name of the Macau Chess Federation, an my personal name, in this deeply sad moment, I express our condolences to the family of Mr. Florencio Campomanes, and to the Philippines Chess Federation and whole Chess Comunnity.

I had friendly and warm personal relations with Mr Campomanes.
I met him several times, starting on the 1994 Moscow Olympiads and Congress, and since then on most of the Olympiads, and he and his family were our honored guests during the 1996 Asian Juniors in Macau. He was of great help for our affiliation bid submission to the FIDE GA and unanimous acceptance into FIDE on 1994.

I also had the great pleasure to play few blitz games with him, and noticed that he was a fast, carefull, and combinative player. I remember him giving most importance to the pawns chain advances up to promotion. Infantry moving first.

When reading Casto article on Mr. Campomanes biography from the FIDE homepage, I got the emotion and the feelings of the great lost for the Chess Community.

This coming Saturday afternoon, before the starting of our Chess Championships 2nd round, we will observe a 1 minute of silence in his honor.

Please extend my personal deep feelings and the Macau Chess Federation condolences to his family.

Best regards
Jose Silveirinha
President of Macau Chess Federation

From Korea Chess Federation

I heard the news in the morning that Mr.Campomanes had passed away.

I have great sorrow for losing a Great Saint in Chess.

Cherish the memory of FIDE Honorary President Florencio Campomanes, I respectfully express my condolences.

Best Regards
Grace Park
Delegate of Korea Chess Federation

From Continental President for Africa Mr. Dabilani Buthali

I have learnt with great sadness the passing on of Campo. On behalf of the African Chess Union and on my own behalf, I am herewith conveying condolences to the Campomanes family. Africa, as a continent owes a lot to its chess development to Campo. Of all the FIDE Presidents, Campo needs to be singled out for always having a soft spot and sympathy for the cause of chess in Africa. Having toured the continent at one point, he knew reality of the African Chess Arena.

At a personal level, I have learnt a great deal from Campo, during the very few moments we have spent together. I recall vividly some fatherly advice from him on being a 'Gentleman'. I also recall his famous remark in 1995 in Paris - 'As people of integrity, we must rise above the petty minds of little people'. I will forever cherish the few months I have had with Campo.

May his soul rest in peace.


From All India Chess Federation

The sad news is at last true. Kindly accept my sincere condolence. Time is the only healer, words are no substitutes. Many come on to live on this earth and not all of them make a mark or leave their imprint, only a few do and Campo is one among them.

May his soul rest in peace.

D V Sundar

From Kurt Jungwirth

Campomanes has died. As President of FIDE he continued and developed the line Max Euwe had begun in chess politics: the opening of FIDE to the whole world. He did not easily accept that at the same time the continents requested stronger positions within FIDE as did Europe founding the European Chess Union in 1985. However in the meantime all divergent opinions between ECU and FIDE are forgotten. Campo was a real chess lover, a great chess mover. My condolences go to his family and to all those who lived and worked close to him.

Prof. Kurt Jungwirth
Former President of the
European Chess Union

From Singapore Chess Federation

It is with a very heavy heart when I was informed about the demise of my mentor Florencio Campomanes, FIDE Honorary President and the Father of Asian Chess.

The Chess World has just lost a great leader who has left behind decades of hard work and labour in promoting chess in many households in every corner of the world. His great work was to epitomise a sport to unite people of similar aspirations in different countries, cultures, races, religions, all over in the world.

I vividly remember the wonderful moments working together with this great man on our visions to promote our passion for chess. His inherently positive approach to life has offered the sport of Chess many valuable lessons.

We were mostly united in our missions and visions, but in the rare instance when we had divergent views, there was never any doubt of his altruistic love for chess.

This great man had taught me to be a better person and leader through understanding and appreciating that life poses many challenges and pitfalls for us all, and unless we have the courage and strength to stand up and speak with one voice, our efforts would but be in vain.

The Chess World joins him and his family in this moment of loss and sadness. We pray with heavy hearts over his passing, but are comforted by the warm memories of having had the pleasure of being his friend.

God bless Campo.

Ignatius Leong
Singapore Chess Federation

From SportAccord

In the name of SportAcord, I wish to express my sincere condolences for the loss of FIDE's Honorary President, Mr. Florencio Campomanes.

It is with great sadness that I acknowledge the news. Mr. Campomanes had been a respected and successful administartor, highly appreciated for his human qualities, and had brought his outstanding contribution to the development of Chess in his country, continent and worldwide.

I will keep a fond memory of his coming to our General Assembly in Athens in 2008 to receive the "Spirit of Sport" award. On that occasion, his emotion was truly vivid and had deeply impressed all the attendees and myself.

May he rest in peace.

Yours sincerely,
Hein Verbruggen

From former President of Seychelles Chess Federation

I have learnt with saddness the passing away of my good friend since 1978 Florencio Campomanes in Baguio City, Philippines on 3rd May.

I first met Campo at the Buenos Aires FIDE Congress in 1978, and since then we developed a very close relationship, and we met in many countries including the Seychelles when he was campaigning for FIDE presidency in Lucerne. I used to affectionately address him as "Campo the Fox", for his ability to outsmart his opponents.

It was perhaps coincidental that we met in Manila last October at his favourite restaurant "Cabalene" and I mentioned to him that it was to be my possible last visit to the Philippines (having been there 15 times) and he replied to me "Let fate decide whether we shall meet again or not " and indeed Fate has made that terrible decision.

Campo was my mentor, and indeed I learnt a lot from him, he was a man who stood "ten feet tall", someone whom one could look up to for inspiration and guidance.

Goodbye old friend and "Salamat Po" for everything.

Rowny J Vidot
Former President
Seychelles Chess Federation

From P.T.Ummer Koya

I am extremely sorry to learn that our beloved Campomanes is no more. As you will definetely agree his untimely departure is an irrepairable loss to the World of chess in general and Asia in particular.

May his soul rest in peace.

Yours sincerely,
P.T.Ummer Koya
Former FIDE Vice President

Sudan Chess Federation

It was a real loss for the world, to say goodbye forever Mr. Florencio Campomanes.
I sympathize with you in the Philippines, one of the beautiful countries which I have visited, and I dealt with Pinoys all of my life, with respectful and friendly attitudes.
Mr. Florencio was a politician, not only academic-wise, but was a politician in chess, who headed FIDE for a long time with success.
I always remember that every time I met Mr. Campomanes, he used to hold my hand as if I was his son, and holding my back while we talk until we finish talking.
Our sincere condolences for his family, his friends, the chess community in Philippines, and the world.


Obay Izzeldin A. Ali
Vice President
Sudan Chess Federation
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