Dr. Erlinda Burton, eminent anthropologist, 74

Dr. Erlinda Burton (left). From her Facebook page

CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY (MindaNews/ 11 September) – Renowned Mindanao-based anthropologist Dr. Erlinda Burton passed away at a local hospital here Tuesday morning. She was 74.

She was born in Kalinga Apayao on Nov. 30, 1944.

Burton was chair of the Cagayan de Oro Historical Commission and before that, was the director of Museo de Oro in Xavier University.

Known for her historical conservation advocacy, Burton figured prominently in the fight to preserve Huluga caves which are believed to be the city’s first human settlement.

Burton took her masters degree in archeology from Brigham Young University in Utah, and her doctorate in anthropology at the University of Pittsburgh. She taught archeology and biological anthropology for a while in California.

After finishing her PhD, she returned to Cagayan de Oro and taught at Xavier University from 1983 to 2018. She served as research director for the Research Institute for Mindanao Cultures at the same university from 1996 to 2005.

Maricel Casino-Rivera, information officer of the Cagayan de Oro local government said the passing away of Burton would be a great loss to the efforts of finding the lost history of the city.

Burton was known for her studies on indigenous peoples in Mindanao, among them the Mamanwa of Surigao, the Manobo of Agusan and the tribes of Bukidnon province.

“Dr. Burton was a hard act to follow. We mourn her passing,” Rivera said.

Dinah Galleros of the Cagayan de Oro Historical Commission said Burton’s remains lay in state at the Divine Shepherd Chapel along Bulua highway in the city.

Public viewing started Tuesday night and will continue until Friday night. (Froilan Gallardo/MindaNews)