CNN, April 26: A Canadian man murdered by militants in the Philippines has been described as a “kind and gregarious person who touched everyone he knew with his enthusiasm and generosity.”

John Ridsdel was beheaded by Islamist militant group Abu Sayyaf, which took him hostage along with three others in September last year.

In a statement, Ridsdel’s family said he “loved life and lived it to the fullest with his family and friends at the center. He was loved by all his friends and adored by his daughters, sister and extended family.”
“Our family is devastated at the loss of our father and brother John Ridsdel whose life was cut tragically short by this senseless act of violence.”

Bob Rae, a close friend of Ridsdel said that “lots of effort” was made to respond to ransom demands but the amounts asked for were too high.

A former Canadian Member of Parliament, Rae told CNN that he “was a very vital and engaging guy.”
Ridsdel had worked as a reporter for The Calgary Herald and CBC and eventually retired from TVI Pacific to tour the world. “He was very adventurous, his career path was unique to him,” Rae said.

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