Kevin Wilson: PNT Staff Writer
Ivan Bordayo died doing what made him happy.
A horse ride Monday evening ended tragically for the 11-year-old when he died from injuries resulting from a horseback accident west of Portales.
Family members didn’t like to relive the accident, but they said they couldn’t imagine him doing anything but riding a horse.
“He’s got pictures of horses (all over his room),” said his father, Giermo Bordayo. “He was always drawing horses. He didn’t like football or soccer or anything like that.”
Ivan was born June 3, 1994, in Seminole, Texas. He attended school in Portales since kindergarten, according to his father.
The students of Lindsey Elementary, where Ivan attended sixth-grade, heard the news at an assembly Tuesday morning and were offered the opportunity to speak with counselors.
“It’s just a hard day at Lindsey,” school Principal Rick Segovia said. “We received the bad news from Ivan’s father this (Tuesday) morning. I met with teachers and just gave them the information. We set up a plan of how we were going to tell the students.”
If the students weren’t up to classes after speaking with counselors, Segovia said they could have their parents take them home for the day.
Lindsey only teaches sixth-grade classes, meaning Segovia and the teachers teach a new crop of students every year. Segovia said Ivan stood out.
“He made an impression on me from the first week,” Segovia said. “He would always be really polite, take his hat off when he entered the building.”
Giermo Bordayo said Ivan, a fan of the horse-racing film “Seabiscuit,” was “a smart boy” who would finish his homework quickly so he could go ride horses.
According to a release from the Roosevelt County Sheriff’s Department, Ivan Bordayo was riding horses with four other boys south of South Roosevelt Road V. The boys were riding down a hill, and Ivan rode ahead of the others, the release said.
Ivan’s brother Fabian, 14, said he was part of the group that rode with Ivan and witnessed the accident.
“We got on this pasture,” Fabian Bordayo said. “He told my friends, ‘You want to see how fast my horse goes?’ There was this ditch. The horse tripped, I guess. He rolled two times over (Ivan). When he got up, my little brother was hanging there.”
Fabian said he and a friend drove Ivan to Roosevelt General Hospital, but he believed his brother died before they could untie him from his horse.
According to the sheriff’s news release, the attending emergency room physician said Ivan Bordayo suffered head trauma and a broken neck.
Funeral services are set for 11 a.m. Thursday at St. Helen Catholic Church.
Segovia said a fund has been established for the Bordayo family at Portales National Bank to help pay for funeral expenses. Segovia said students could donate at the school if they wished as well.
The family members said friends and neighbors have been supportive, and they’ve been able to hold back a little of their sadness by remembering the type of person Ivan was.
“He cared a lot,” Fabian Bordayo said. “He loved all kinds of things. He was a happy person. He was always happy, he was always laughing.”