The British writer, Bob Couttie, has died aged 71 in Balangiga, Philippines after a short illness. He had lived in the Philippines for 30 years before moving to Cambodia where he lived in Kampot for a number of years before returning to Balangiga.
In Kampot, Bob was known for hosting pub quizzes and being the voice of the daily news on Kampot Radio.
Bob spent most of his writing career as a story teller, with several published science fiction short-stories, well-respected plays on BBC Radio 4, and produced film scripts. He is also known for his investigative books on the paranormal, Philippine history and his studies of maritime accidents.
His most recent book, ‘Fools Gold’, examined the many frauds and myths in Filipino history, though he is perhaps best known for ‘Hang the Dogs: The True Tragic Story of the Balangiga Massacre’ which uncovered the facts behind a tragic event in Filipino history. He also played a small part in the US returning the Balangiga Bells to the Philippines in 2018 after they had been held by the US Army for 117 years.
Readers in Cambodia will remember his cosy mystery, ‘Temple of the Leper King’, set in his then hometown of Kampot and featuring a retired French detective.
Bob was a meticulous researcher when it came to his historical work, unearthing previously unknown facts through many hours of investigation. His work was recognised by the UK’s Royal Historical Society’ in July of this year when they elected him as a member.
In his younger years, he was also an accomplished amateur magician, appearing alongside major names of the day such as Ali Bongo.
The family urgently needs money for the funeral. If any of Bob’s former friends want to assist, they can get in contact via chat or email for more details.
-Submitted by a friend of Bob.