The Death of Ilya Gabai, 20 October 1973 (30.1)

<< No 30 : 31 December 1973 >>

♦  Ilya Yankelevich Gabai is dead. He committed suicide on 20 October by jumping from the balcony of his 11th-floor flat  ♦

More than a hundred people gathered at the Nikolskoye Crematorium in Moscow to pay their last respects to him. His ashes have been interred beside his father’s grave in Baku.

A teacher and a poet, Gabai was 38 years old. He left behind a wife and two children.

One can only conjecture about the cause of his death. But explanations such as the effects of prison, interrogations, searches or the enforced idleness of a talented individual do not accord with one’s conception of Gabai.

To all those who knew him Ilya Gabai — an exceptionally compassionate man with an unrelenting sense of personal responsibility — was the embodiment of a moral presence. And even his last desperate act contains, probably, a message which it is incumbent upon his friends to understand…

See Ilya Gabai’s Last Words (Tashkent, 1970), CCE 35.13

llya Gabai

One thought on “The Death of Ilya Gabai, 20 October 1973 (30.1)

Comments are closed.