San José, Costa Rica, since 1956

In Memoriam Donlon Havener (Obituary)


In Memoriam

Donlon Havener


December 16, 1918 – July 13, 2010


Donlon Havener was born December 16, 1918 in Verona, New York, the son of Frank and Kathryn Havener. He attended VeronaHigh School (1936), received his undergraduate (1940) from the University of Toronto and NiagaraUniversity, and Master of Arts (1941) from New YorkStateUniversity. He also attended the National University of Mexico and the University of Florence, Italy.

He completed four years service in U.S. Army Air Corps Pacific Theater, 1941-1945, and was on the first team to enter Hiroshima after World War II.

After a short teaching career at SyracuseUniversity, in the U.S. state of New York, after the war, he went to Mexico where he spent nearly 20 years. He taught at the University of the Americas and was director of the Mexico City Center of Bilingual Studies for 17 years. He was founder and president of the Lowell School, Mexico’s first finishing school.

He then returned to the USA to head up a bilingual program for The Mount Vernon School in Westchester County, New York.

From 1971-1989, he served as professor, department head and interim rector at the Inter-American University of Puerto Rico, and retired to Santa Ana, Costa Rica in 1989.

In Costa Rica, he carried on the work of Tom Johnston and Norman Brown at The Little Theatre Group’s Angel of Love Foundation that supports The Tom and NormanHome for the homeless in Guápiles.

In later years he turned to journalism and wrote a column for the Oneida Daily Dispatch in New York.

His only brother, John Riley, passed away four years ago, and he is survived by a daughter, Mrs. Paul Drisgula, and two grandchildren, all of New York.

Don, who spoke fluent Spanish, was a loved member of the barrio in San Rafael de Santa Ana, at the home in Guápiles, and among the expatriate community. He was a dedicated supporter of The Little Theatre Group for many years. He will be sadly missed by his friends in Costa Rica and the U.S.


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