ISLAND HISTORY: Tribute to Pacific magazine and editor Bud Bendix

It was Bud Bendix (1931-2016), the managing editor at Honolulu-based Pacific magazine, who in 1996 gave me my first break as a writer, when he accepted my historical nonfiction article “Surviving Among the Cannibals” for publication in the September-October issue of the magazine.

Bud’s acceptance and his check as payment also afforded me the great personal satisfaction of finally becoming a published writer at last after four long years of rejection by a number of publications.

He would also accept my “Some Bad Old Days in the South Seas” in 1998, “The South Seas Sojourn of Sydney Powell” in 1999, and “The Pacific Adventures of John Cameron” in 2000 for publication in Pacific magazine.

In 2000, Bud Bendix resigned from Pacific magazine when its owner and publisher, Bruce Jensen, sold the magazine, and my association with the magazine then came to a close.

But, while Jensen and Bendix were at the helm, each issue had offered its readers charming, interesting and informative glimpses of the Pacific island region’s past and present in its special features and in its news and current-affairs reports.

Remote and little-known islands and atolls of Micronesia, Melanesia and Polynesia seemed to come to life in its pages.

Its new owner and editors could not hope to replicate Jensen’s and Bendix’s unique point of view.

Financial difficulties subsequently arose, and the magazine folded in 2008.

Born and raised in Washington state, Bendix was also a graduate of Washington State University, an Army officer, a Honolulu Advertiser reporter, an expert in corporate publications with Hawaiian Telephone Company/GTE, a guest lecturer to journalism students at the University of Hawai‘i at Manoa, and an actor who appeared in many plays in Honolulu with local theater groups.

His memorable character roles ranged from T.S. Arthur’s “Ten Nights in a Bar Room” and Bertolt Brecht’s “Mother Courage” to George Bernard Shaw’s “Major Barbara.”

A favorite role of his was Ichabod Crane in “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow.”

Bendix was survived by his wife, Jeannine, children Mark and Diana, and grandchildren Peik and Lani.

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