The story of a farm manager and the wonderful coffee he helped to produce for Finca Vista Hermosa, and the legacy he leaves behind. His life, and that of his son were tragically cut short by roadside bandits.
sjames Senior Member Joined: 19 Dec 2001 Posts: 466 Location: Melbourne, Australia Expertise: Pro Barista
Espresso: Expobar eb-61 Office Leva Grinder: Mazzer Mini Vac Pot: Unibuy Syphon Drip: Are you talking to me????? Roaster: Genovese Coffee
Posted Wed Feb 27, 2008, 2:10am Subject: Re: Carlos Martin by Mark Prince
Although I'm passionate about coffee, I've only recently become interested in "Origin". So I won't claim to know Carlos and Edwin, or even Finca Vista Hermosa, apart from Edwin Martinez being a contact of mine on Flickr. When I heard the news, I was stunned! Although I had never heard of Carlos & Edwin, something in me was moved. I was compelled to find out more about this great man. The more I read about him, the more I am moved by the legacy Carlos has left. So yes, I feel a responsibility to honour his legacy. I've discussed this with Luca Costanzo in Melbourne, and we'll raise some money. But Luca, my wife and I agree that whatever money is raised now will be good for the short term. What can we also do to assist Juana and her children in the long term? What can we do to have his children be put through school and receive an education, so that they have every opportunity to fulfill their potentials?
Kit: Expobar EB61 Leva, Mazzer Mini, various tampers (Reg Barbers, Pullmans, and the "Perfect Leveller"), Unibuy TCA-3 Syphon, 2 cup V60, SS Moka Pot.
MarkPrince Moderator Joined: 19 Dec 2001 Posts: 5,609 Location: Vancouver, BC Expertise: Professional
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Posted Wed Feb 27, 2008, 3:42am Subject: Re: Carlos Martin by Mark Prince
During my conversation with Edwin yesterday, I told him that I wanted to do something long term, and specifically brought up education - something that Carlos was proud of Edwin for doing. A Mayan getting a full education is apparently an extremely rare thing in Guatemala. We talked about possible scholarships through this website for any of his children who want it, and other long term plans.
I asked Edwin to speak to Carlos' family (Carlos Martin's brother is the mayor of their town! and used to be the manager of Finca Vista Hermosa before moving back to San Juan (I think) to run for the mayor's position) to find out what an educational scholarship would require, how much money, and which of the children may want it. Edwin wrote me this evening:
"I will come back mid/end march with as clear a picture as possible on specific needs regarding schooling and education for Juana's kids."
Edwin's family will be doing a lot to help Carlos' family out, especially with logistics that the father used to take care of, as will Carlos' own family. 100% of the Memorial fund donations will be going to Juana and the kids, though I believe Carlos' brother, and possibly Edwin's family (as well as Carlos' oldest sons and daughters) will be helping Mom with things she's never had to experience before - managing money, being the head of the household, etc.
But I'd like to be in this long term as well, and told Edwin as much.
It's great to hear that you, Luca and possibly others would be interested in this as well.
lethalblonde Senior Member Joined: 23 Nov 2005 Posts: 205 Location: Bailey, CO Expertise: I like coffee
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Posted Wed Feb 27, 2008, 12:12pm Subject: Re: Carlos Martin by Mark Prince
I have enough to get by, though little more - but his family has lost so much.
I'll do my best to make a small, repetitive donation and hope that the cumulative funds help to see the children provided for and educated so that the legacy and stewardship perpetuates and hopefully flourishes.
Mark, I hope you'll periodicallly follow up and let us know how they're doing, and how the farm carries on past this, to perhaps rise even farther.
"The blessing lies not in living, merely, but in living well." Seneca, 8 B.C.
Coffee_Cigarettes Senior Member Joined: 12 Aug 2007 Posts: 178 Location: X Expertise: I live coffee
Posted Wed Feb 27, 2008, 12:20pm Subject: Re: Carlos Martin by Mark Prince
Thank you for this article Mark. I find as my love for this drink grows it is easy to forget about the people who make it possible. As I can not fit an origin trip into my schedule any time soon, these essays are one of few ways I can expand my concept of what the realties are in coffee producing countries. This is an issue of critical importance to myself, as that I am prospecting the idea of doing research in this area of the world. Every statistic that I look at represents someone's personal livelihood as well as that of their families and communities. Without the views shared in this column and others, I would feel little qualified to continue down my current path of study.
DavidBB Senior Member Joined: 10 Jan 2008 Posts: 185 Location: Alberta Expertise: I love coffee
Espresso: Vibiemme Domobar Super... Grinder: Mazzer Mini Vac Pot: 8 cup FP Drip: Hamilton Beach Roaster: 5lb BBQ Drum, iR2
Posted Wed Feb 27, 2008, 12:59pm Subject: Re: Carlos Martin by Mark Prince
I turn a lot of opportunities to donate money down. Actually I seem to be building up quite a resistance to helping people out financially. I do have a couple donations I make yearly, so I don't feel too bad turning down all the street, phone and email solicitations. Some cases do touch the heart though and exceptions are made. This will be one of those times.
"Once you wake up and smell the coffee, it's hard to go back to sleep".
Posted Wed Feb 27, 2008, 5:40pm Subject: Re: Carlos Martin by Mark Prince
I want to send out my sincere condolences to Mr. Martin's family, what a tragedy for his family and the community. That is a sad reminder that many of the regions growing coffee are often in political or social turmoil.
I stambled upon another very tragic story from Uganda, click here, where a long-time coffee farmer was killed with his family. Simply devastating.
*There are two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle*
To show our love and support for the entire family of Finca Vista Hermosa and to help Carlos’ wife Juana and her 11 children Barefoot Coffee Roasters is launching a support fund for their family. From February 22nd through March 7th
100% of all proceeds from sales of all of our Guatemala Finca Vista Hermosa coffees beans will be donated to the fund for Juana.
This applies online and in store. An easy way to donate is to buy some of the coffee, in addition to any direct donating you plan to do.
Rawman the Expobarbarian.. AKA the Original Jon R.
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