Meet the Volunteers

Martin Koester

I live in a condo near Centro Historico in Balconies de Loma Linda.  My wife and I purchase our condo in 2010.  I grew up in the Chicago area and when discharged from the Navy in 1970 in San Francisco, decided to stay where the weather was better!  My wife and I have been married for 31 years and upon both of us retiring from residential real estate, we both sold new homes, we decided we wanted to sell our 2.5 acres in CA and try condo living in Mexico.  Unfortunately, given the real estate market in CA since our retirement, we are currently hanging onto our CA home with the hopes of selling it in the not to distant future.  Until then we will live 6 months in CA and 6 months in Mazatlan.  We both love Mazatlan and its wonderful people.

Wendy Gregerson

  

 In Mazatlan, we live at the Condominiums Lido, across from the Casa del Marino. We have owned since 2001. We live half the year on the Apple River in Western Wisconsin, just 40 miles from the Twin Cities, MN. We are recently retired from New Richmond Wisconsin Public Schools. Wendy was a Para Professional in the High School Library and Rich is a retired Director of Bands. We have 5 kids between us and 11 grandchildren. We enjoy living in Mazatlan, especially all of our new friends. Living in Mazatlan is a “dream come true” for us. It is Paradise! We enjoy being Tourist Aid Volunteers since we want everyone to experience all of the positive attributes of Mazatlan.

 

Marvin Holmes

  

After working in the mining industry for 40 years, I needed to find a way to leave the long, cold winter in Saskatchewan behind me.  After much research, my wife Sharon and I decided Mazatlan would be the place we would call our home.  We both love it here and pleased we can fulfill our dreams here.    Helping other people enjoy this vacation destination has always been interesting and fun.

Sharon Holmes

   My first trip to Mazatlan was in 1984 for a two week vacation.  I really enjoyed the mexican hospitality and culture so brought my husband Marvin  back a couple of years later.  We both vacationed here and other places in Mexico for a number of years.   After  having 35  years of service with a major financial institution in Canada I decided to take early retirement.  We were searching for a location that was a great escape front the long, cold winters in Saskatchewan.  Our love for Mazatlan drew us back here where  we purchased a home in a mexican neighbourhood.  We are honoured to live here for six months each year and enjoy the interaction with our mexican neighbours.   We enjoy volunteering for Mazatlan Tourist Aides as we have the opportunity to meet many tourists and answer their questions therefore helping to make their vacation more enjoyable.

 

Rich Gregerson

   In Mazatlan, we live at the Condominiums Lido, across from the Casa del Marino. We have owned since 2001. We live half the year on the Apple River in Western Wisconsin, just 40 miles from the Twin Cities, MN. We are recently retired from New Richmond Wisconsin Public Schools. Wendy was a Para Professional in the High School Library and Rich is a retired Director of Bands. We have 5 kids between us and 11 grandchildren. We enjoy living in Mazatlan, especially all of our new friends. Living in Mazatlan is a “dream come true” for us. It is Paradise! We enjoy being Tourist Aid Volunteers since we want everyone to experience all of the positive attributes of Mazatlan.

Isabel Hudgins

  My name is Ellen Isabel Hudgins de Medina (Medina is my married name), and go by Isabel. Born & raised in California, but deeply rooted in Mazatlan because my mother is a Mazatlan native. So this has been my second home my entire life. One thing let to the next, and before I knew it, my mom's best friend's son (a Mazatleco!) and I fell in love while I was here on vacation. So here I am, married and living in Mazatlan for 29 years now, with 4 kids ranging from 25 to 15 years old.
 
I'm a freelance  translator and conference interpreter, working from home. I volunteered for this project because I believe it's something I can do to give back to this wonderful community. I've led a happy, healthy, full life here with my family, and care so much about Mazatlan and the way it is perceived by foreigners, because of the effect this has on local tourism, which plays an important economic role in this State. And I really love interacting with fellow expats and sharing our love for the place we live in.
 

Brenda Millirones

We arrived in Mazatlan in March 2009.  We had never been to Mexico before but were looking for an adventure.  We fell in love with Mazatlan, the ocean, the weather, the people and places we visited.  We had sold everything we owned in Virginia and decided to find a new life and we found it.  When my husband passed away suddenly in 2010 I decided to stay in Mazatlan. I have found a wonderful life and many friends here.  And I plan to stay indefinitely.

Enedina Giles

  I was born and raised in Mazatlan in a Mexican family of 3 younger brothers and 2 older sisters. I spent 18 years of my life between ages 18 and 36 taking sole care of my invalid mother, 3 younger brothers and my father too. I met my American husband, Ben Giles, in Oct. 1991, shortly after my mother died and we were married in May 1992. My husband took me to the U.S. where we retired and lived in Florida, Alabama and Texas. We traveled all over the U.S. in our motor home and finally built our retirement home in Pensacola, Florida in 2001. Our move to Mazatlan from Pensacola, Florida was prompted as a result of damage sustained from hurricane Ivan in Sept. 2004, which took us 11 months to recover only to be hit by Hurricane Dennis in Aug., 2005. We sold our home in Sept., 2005 and moved to reestablish our residency in Houston, Texas before moving our household goods to Mazatlan in Jan., 2006. We purchased a new home in Oct., 2005 in Sabalo Country and finally move into our new home in Jan. 2006. Since our move to Mazatlan, we have traveled to several countries throughout Latin America as well as many states throughout Mexico. We feel perfectly safe when we take frequent trips in our street legal dune buggy. Retired life in Mazatlan is the best health medicine we could ever have. We only travel to the U.S. as little as possible because we enjoy life in Mazatlan so very much. We want to help others feel the same way too.

 

Ben Giles

I was born and raised in Montgomery, Alabama and joined the U.S. Navy in 1957 for 4 years. Upon discharge I returned to Alabama and received a BS Degree from Auburn University in 1964 with a commission in the USAF. I received my MS Degree from the University of Southern California in 1975, before retiring from the USAF in 1981. I spent 10 years with private contractors in the Space Shuttle Program at Kennedy Space Center, Florida and Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas before coming to Mazatlan. I have 4 children, 11 grandchildren and 2 great grandchildren from previous marriages. I met my wife, Enedina, in Oct., 1991, shortly after I arrived in Mazatlan and we were married in May, 1992. I have since spent the best 20 years of my life since I married Enedina. We purchased a new home in Sabalo Country and finally move into our new home in Jan. 2006. We have traveled to several countries throughout Latin American as well as many states all over Mexico. We have a street legal dune buggy that we feel very safe with whenever we take trips throughout Mexico. Travel is our hobby along with having fun times with our Mexican, American and Canadian friends here in Mazatlan. I am a diabetic of more than 25 years and my doctors in Houston tell me that whatever I am doing in Mexico, to keep doing. Enedina and I want to do all we can to help those people who do not have a comfortable feeling about visiting or moving to Mazatlan that this is a great city.

Larry Lambert

Our first trip to Mazatlan was a vacation in the spring of 2006, and by that fall we had moved here permanently. After that first visit we returned to Idaho, I retired from engineering and disposed of just about all of our possessions. The few things we kept had to fit in a 5 x 8 trailer; if they didn’t fit we didn’t need them. We bought a house in Lomas del Mar, a few blocks from the beach, in what is sometimes called mid-town. Mazatlan is all about its people, the most gracious and generous you will find anywhere.

 

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Next Meeting

Because we are a volunteers group, I try to keep meetings to a minium. (It can become a strain to volunteer and make meetings.) But 2 or 3 times a year we will get together just to share ideas and feedback. If you have any questions, just e-mail me at   roger@maz-homes.com   and put "Tourist Aides Info" in the subject line. I will get back to you as quickly as possible.

Our Supporters

We want to thank Simon Lynds who paid the bulk of the cost for our first batch of T-Shirts. Thanks Si !! Since then, the Secretary of Tourism ( SECTUR ) has been supplying T-Shirts to all our volunteers. They also supply us with hundreds of maps that we give out free to tourists who can use them. This is a huge help.

We really appreciate Beachfront Host who donates the server space to host this website.

We receive a LOT of help from SECTUR which is the Sinaloa State Secretary of Tourism. They provide us with T-Shirts, maps, and ID badges so we are 'Official'! Our contacts with SECTUR are Pavel Jimenez and Ivan Pico. Their dedication and professionalism is a big reason why we are able to do what we do. It is also a nice fringe benefit that we get several 'extra's a year from SECTUR and from the support provided by the U.S. Consular Agent here in Mazatlan, Luis Ramirez. Between them we have had special trips, invitations to concerts, and sometimes special seating for concerts and shows. It is not ALL work!!

A big thanks to Beachfront Web who donated their time and talents to create this website.