Our Community Needs You……
Once again, today two bodies (tourists) were recovered at Playa Linda, near Matapalo. These two persons drowned. Instead of have to wait until these bodies appear, we should have our own Coast Guard Dive Team that can respond to these types of emergencies and start rescue or recovery operations immediately. While there are no guarantees that we will recover these bodies immediately we should show the families that we care and that we at least try to find them instead of waiting for these bodies to show up somewhere. We are glad to inform you that the local Coast Guard Station has already purchased the bulk of the basic equipment and are arranging the advanced training programs. However, they need additional equipment in order to comply with recognized training requirements essential to the safety of the divers, prior to fielding a complete operational team. Because of the normal budgeting process this will take this to next year but the services of this team are needed now as was evidenced by the recent drownings.
The following message was sent recently to some of our areas Movers and Shakers Advisory Council:
“The Security Committee of the Chamber of Commerce, Industry and Tourism is looking for financial support to assist the National Coast Guard Academy of Costa Rica which is headquartered in Quepos with the formation of a specialized Rescue/Recovery Dive Team which can be called on a moment’s notice for water emergencies. This Special Dive Response Team can be especially useful for rescue and recovery operations in high seas. Most of the equipment and training for this Public Safety Course has been secured through some of our programs but we are still missing some critical specialized equipment needed to get started. This equipment includes a Self Rescue Redundant Spare Air system which allows the Rescue Diver to get to the surface in an out-of-air emergency. Also needed are Primary Dive Lights which allows the divers to see under water during rescue operations. Other equipment includes search reels, lift bags, etc. Should you be interested to support our efforts to ensemble the first specialized dive team in Costa Rica, please let us hear from you. Without a doubt this is a very worthwhile and historic project and deserves your attention. We should be proud to be the “Home of the Costa Rican National Coast Guard Academy” and should support the formation of this first Costa Rican First-Response Dive Team as long no other financial resources are available”.
Should you want to join me and Capt. Scott Fergusson in these fundraising efforts, please let us hear from you! On behalf of our guests and myself, I have donated $250.00 towards this effort and Lic. Mauricio Lara-Ramos has pledged the same amount. That gives us $500.00 to start this effort with… Any support is appreciated….
Owner La Mansion Inn & Contempo
For the first time since the formation of the National Coast Guard Service of Costa Rica representatives of the private sector of the Canton de Aguirre hosted the 13th Anniversary of the Nation’s Coast Guard during a Gala Dinner at the La Mansion Inn in Manuel Antonio.
“The Costa Rican Coast Guard has come a long way since its inception 13 years ago but still has very long way to go and needs the support not only from San Jose but also needs the moral support of the private sector” said Harry Bodaan, President of the Chamber of Commerce, Industry and Tourism of the Canton de Aguirre and Owner of Hotel La Mansion Inn and continued “Few people realize that the Costa Rican Coast Guard does incredible work not only to protect the environment but does tremendous and hazardous work with drug interception operations under the most difficult and harsh of circumstances. In a country without a military, it is the only elite maritime force that stands between the transnational drug cartels and the Costa Rican people and patrols an ocean area that is 13 times the size of Costa Rica. They deserve our support, respect and admiration and work against a difficult enemy that has unlimited resources at their disposal which can easily corrupt public officials at virtually every level in government”.
The guest list of the Gala Dinner Event included the Director of the National Coast Guard of Costa Rica Commander Martin Arias, the Commanders of all the Costa Rica Coast Guard Stations, the Commander of the Quepos Coast Guard Academy and several international naval officers and special invited guests.
More than 160 well-wishers from all walks of life came out the help celebrate the birthday of Harry Bodaan, owner of the La Mansion Inn and President of the Chamber of Commerce at a spectacular Pool Party hosted at the Contempo Club. Amongst the many guests were Isabel Leon, current Mayor and former Mayors Oscar Monge and Alex Contreras. Besides close friends, guests included a virtual “Who is Who” in the Canton including key members of local government and law enforcement, other governmental institutions and key business leaders.
Entertainment was provided by the famous Columbian Singer Gregory Cabrera, Costa Rica’s own Roger Morales and Nicaraguan Guitarist Marvin backed up by the local talented dancers Kenneth Morales and Allyson Maykall. Select Wines, Champagne and other libations flowed freely all night accompanied by sumptuous hors d’oeuvres.
Asked about the key reasons for the Party, Harry Bodaan responded “I have so many reasons to celebrate; I could not help myself plan this party. The hotel is doing well, I have great friends and staff, I survived cancer, I am happy with my life, we continue to support local projects and our Canton is on the right path with some great projects being planned by the Municipality and Chamber for the people of Quepos that includes a Sports Park for the kids of the Quepos area, parking facilities in Manuel Antonio and facilities for the Feria de Agricultor. We also are proud to have helped initiate a Water Sewage Treatment Plant Survey for the Quepos area. The morning of my birthday I joined Mayor Isabel Leon, City Council President Jonathan Rodriguez and the City Council at a ground-breaking ceremony for the brand new “Red Social” building in the Acumulada area of Quepos that will be tasked of taking care of children while their parents are at work thus keeping them of the street and protected. Besides Quepos is currently in the World Spotlight because of the First International Bill Fish Tournament at Marina Pez Vela and, according to Forbes Magazine, Manuel Antonio National Park achieved status as “One of the most Beautiful National Parks in the World”. Local Law Enforcement is doing an excellent job and I am in process of buying them a new facility so they can finally live and work as human beings instead of feeling like second-class citizens. I am enormously grateful that God allows me to continue to help make a difference and I am happy so many of my friends could join me for this festive occasion”.