Manoharan Kamaleson 1963-2019

By Bethany Peterson

Manoharan Paul Kamaleson, Wheaton College Adjunct Professor of Business and Economics, was killed in a suicide bombing in Kabul, Afghanistan on Monday, Jan. 14 at age 55.

Kamaleson was serving as the CEO of First Microfinance Bank of Afghanistan. He had recently returned to Afghanistan from a holiday break in Chicago to visit family, according to the Los Angeles Times.

In addition to Kamaleson, at least three other individuals were killed and over 100 more were injured after a suicide bomber detonated explosives in a vehicle near the Green Village Compound where several international organizations are located, according to the Washington Post. A Taliban spokesperson later claimed responsibility for the attack in a media statement.

According to his obituary on Hultgren Funeral Home’s website, Kamaleson was born in Chennai, India on Oct. 21, 1963, but grew up in Arcadia, Calif. from age 11. He attended Azusa Pacific University for his undergraduate degree and then went out to receive his MBA from The Peter F. Drucker and Masatoshi Ito Graduate School of Management of Claremont Graduate University.

Kamaleson dedicated his career to serving those in need through his work in finance. He held numerous leadership positions Eastern Europe, Asia, Africa and the United States. Sophomore Katia Lauderdale was impacted by Kamaleson’s hospitality in each of these locations. “Upon my family’s arrival to Budapest, the entire Kamaleson family were some of the first to welcome us into the community. Their unconditional hospitality, in word and deed, emulated Christ,” Lauderdale told the Record in an email.

The Chaplain’s Office sent out an email to Wheaton’s campus asking the community to “Please remember Mano’s family before the Lord in prayer in their sudden and unexpected grief and loss, asking for the comfort of the Holy Spirit to sustain and deeply console them as only he can.”

Kamaleson is survived by his wife, Nicole, and their three sons, two of whom are current Wheaton students. The family has requested privacy during this time. “Though traveling often from a career and life committed to serving others, Dr. Kamaleson’s most admirable characteristics were his fierce dedication and pursuit of his family,” Lauderdale said.

His visitation will be held Thursday, Jan. 31 at 4 p.m. at Hultgren Funeral Home in Wheaton. Family and friends will also meet for a homegoing service Friday, Feb. 1 at 11:30 a.m. at Wellspring Alliance Church in Wheaton.

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