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Lionel "Chocolate" Heredia
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Poster Marty Offline
Posted 04/12/13 10:31 PM
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"Chocolate" Heredia, father of the Swallow Caye Manatee Reserve, passed away this morning. Boy will he be missed. What a wonderful man, who fought for the creatures of this earth.

Here's a lil about his life from the San Pedro Sun in July, 2007

========

Born on the tiny island of San Pedro, Chocolate grew up enjoying his life by the Caribbean Sea. His nickname was earned when he displayed his negotiation skills by trading his mother's sweet bread, which he was assigned to sell, with chocolate candies. Although Chocolate did not receive a formal education, his adventures and life experiences have earned him whatever he's missed during school lectures. From a young age, he has loved nature and the environment; this love spurred his first actions as a conservationist. His first "save the environment" actions were when he kept a vigilant eye over the turtle hatchlings, keeping predatory birds away by hurling small coconuts at them.

As a teenager, Chocolate began his career in commercial fisheries. This direct interaction with the sea fostered respect for this environment. These years were the most formative in his development as a local environmental enthusiast, as he came to the realization of how deeply his livelihood was entwined with the continued health of the sea.

Chocolate took to boating early, becoming a fisherman by his 18th birthday. Struggling to make a living, he moved to Belize City, called then the old British Honduras (Belize gained independence in 1981), he tried his hand at numerous jobs in and around dusty Belize City, but it wasn't until the mid-1960s that career inspiration struck.

Chocolate was asked to ferry an American out to the warm waters off-shore to take a look at the herd of Antillean manatees - lovably large, stodgy sea mammals related to the dugong, that were often wishfully mistaken for mermaids by ancient sailors. An idea bubbled to the surface and Chocolate's new career change was just a tour boat away.

Since setting up business in 1968, Chocolate has been plying the waters on regular trips to see the manatees. These strange, lumbering creatures have become his passion as well as a source of income and Chocolate has become the country's most vocal advocate for increased funding and patrols to protect the manatee's habitat and food supply.

Trading the bustling city life, Chocolate moved to Caye Caulker. There he kept offering his tours and also transported people to and from the island and the city. This gave way to the formation of the Caye Caulker Water Taxi Association. In 1982 he opened his gift shop, offering knick knacks to visitors of the island and seeing the need for accommodations, Chocolate went on to open a guest house in 1992.

Chocolate has immersed himself into various conservation efforts, which range from attempting to stop hunters from shooting egrets at Bird Caye to trying to convince his fellow tour operators to shut off their motors at various manatee sites. The efforts of this remarkable man have not gone unnoticed as Mr. James A. Waight himself appointed Chocolate, Honorary Warden at Bird Caye, Northern Lagoon.

Chocolate has worked extensively to protect the manatees and his natural habitat. His fight received much praise and recognition when Swallow Caye Wildlife Sanctuary was signed into legislation on Wednesday, July 10th, 2002. The Swallow Caye Sanctuary lobbying efforts began in 1998 and with tears in his eyes, Chocolate accepted his personal copy of the statutory instrument at a special ceremony.

On February 16th, 2003, Chocolate was once again honored when he received The James Waight Conservation Award. This award has evolved to become the most prestigious Belizean award for conservation and it certainly was a testimony to the greatness of this man whose entire life has been dedicated to the service of his country and his people. "Mr. Heredia exemplifies what it means to be a conservationist. He has proven that it is not formal education that makes you an effective conservationist, but one's love for his environment and his dedication to its protection," commented Valdemar Andrade, Executive Director, during the official ceremonies.

The Lifetime Achievement Award presented by Minister of Tourism and the Belize Tourism Board was handed to Chocolate on December 5th, 2003. He was described as a man who has displayed much resilience and determination in executing many initiatives that have positively impacted our tourism industry. Chocolate's signature hospitality has made many tourists return to Belize, just for a chance to interact with him and hear his stories. Chocolate, "rightfully deserved this award for being a humble and passionate man, and is a true stalwart of the tourism industry."

Founding member of the Caye Caulker Branch of the Belize Tourism Industry Association and of the Caye Caulker Water Taxi Association, as well as founding member and past president of the National Association of Specialist and Interpretive Guides, Chocolate also founded Friends of Swallow Caye. This organization won the "Community Based Organization of the Year" for 2006-2007.

During his free time, Chocolate enjoys spending time with his wife, Annie in the quiet village of Caye Caulker which he calls home. He loves sharing his stories and disseminating his knowledge of Belize's environment with all. A proud father of Sandra, Cynthia, Leila, Deborah, Maria Lus and Noah, Chocolate is a "legend" on Caye Caulker. An avid conservationist, nationally recognized for his work with manatees and establishing the Swallow Caye Manatee Reserve, Lionel "Chocolate" Heredia's passion is one that just won't quit as he continues protecting the environment in "Our Belize Community."
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#462303 - 04/13/13 11:09 AM Re: Lionel "Chocolate" Heredia [Re: Marty]
Marty Offline

A Lion Of The Conservation Movement Passes

Tonight we note the passing of a giant in Belize’s conservation community. Leonel Heredia, known as “Chocolate” died this afternoon at 1:00 pm at his home in Caye Caulker. He had been troubled by an aneurysm for the past two weeks and that’s what took his life this afternoon. “Don Choc” as we affectionately called him, was 83.

In his young days, he was a fisherman and later on became a founding member of the Caye Caulker Water Taxi Association with his boat, “The Soledad.”

But he was best known for his deep affinity for manatees and in 2002, he got the Swallow Caye Wildlife Sanctuary legally established. When it was established, the then 73 year old told us that he hoped to bequeath a legacy to coming generations yet unborn:…

Chocolate died in the company of his wife of the past 25 years, Annie. She told us he was at peace and died without pain. The funeral plans have not been finalized.

Leonel “Chocolate” Heredia, dead at 83.

Channel 7


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#462322 - 04/13/13 02:06 PM Re: Lionel "Chocolate" Heredia [Re: Marty]
Katie Valk Offline
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#462326 - 04/13/13 02:21 PM Re: Lionel "Chocolate" Heredia [Re: Marty]
Marty Offline
In memory of Lionel Chocolate Heredia

Videos by Michael Desabrais

RIP Chocolate – you will forever be in our hearts!!
Yesterday, after what started out to be one of the greatest days in Caye Caulker history, ended with the loss of our dear friend Lionel ‘Chocolate’ Heredia! He died peacefully in his house on the island with his wife Annie at 83 years old – his passing away leaving us all deeply saddened!!

For as long as I have known Chocolate has been Raggamuffin’s neighbor and friend, a mentor and a true support right from the beginning! His continued efforts towards protecting everything that inhabits our Belizean ocean were deservedly recognized with awards by all with any form of investment in her. He will be most recognized for his work to protect the Belizean manatee and indeed Swallow Caye Wildlife Sanctuary – his work creating a legacy for generations to come.

For us at Raggamuffin we will miss our neighbor and friend as we look out of our office – no longer will we see him scuttle past the office to go and purchase his afternoon’s sweet bun – he was part of our family and our daily lives and we are now forced to adjust to life without him – RIP dear friend, you will forever be in our hearts!!


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#462396 - 04/15/13 10:25 AM Re: Lionel "Chocolate" Heredia [Re: Marty]
Marty Offline

On behalf of Annie Seashore-Heredia & the Family of Leonel "Chocolate" Heredia, I hereby invite the General Public to the "Celebration of Life" of one of Belize's Icons for Conservation, "Chocolate"

Saturday, April 20, 2013 1:00pm

Place: Chocolate's Residence on Caye Caulker

Thank you for your support. Please be advised that in keeping with Chocolate's Legacy we invite you to make contributions to Friends of Swallow Caye in lieu of Flowers or Wreaths.

Also no alcohol will be served and finger foods are welcome if anyone wants to bring something






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#462397 - 04/15/13 10:26 AM Re: Lionel "Chocolate" Heredia [Re: Marty]
Marty Offline
Interview with Belize’s Manatee Guru, Captain “Chocolate”

From the deck of Captain Lionel “Chocolate” Heredia’s mahogany boat, you can peer out into the water near Swallow Caye to glimpse one of the Caribbean’s most enchanting creatures.

A large gray body slowly glides along in the sea; a bit shy and on her own relaxed agenda, she is clearly not a spotlight-driven attention-seeker. On the other side of the boat, excited screams of “Look, a dolphin!” call the onlookers away from the husky creature swimming slowly alongside the vessel. But those who remain with the manatee will begin to understand the quiet beauty of this mammal, a creature that was once confused with mermaids from afar by seafarers.
Manatee, Belize wildlife

Photo by kthypryn on Flickr

Underrated, but beginning to gain their proper appreciation in recent years, the manatee is one of the most intelligent aquatic species, as well as the most docile. And you can encounter these gentle Antillean manatees in the wild while exploring Belize: a profoundly peaceful, magical brush with wildlife you won’t soon forget.

It’s this experience that Belize’s manatee guru, Captain Lionel “Chocolate” Heredia, provides to his guests on tours out of Swallow Caye.

I recently caught up with Chocolate and his wife Annie Seashore and got to know these Sirenians, also referred to as “sea cows,” a little better.

Amble Resorts: What made you decide to dedicate your life to protecting the manatee?

Lionel “Chocolate” Heredia: I have always been interested in the sea and the animals that live there. When I was young I witnessed a manatee killing and after hearing the cry I vowed to do what I could to help protect these animals.

AR: I’ve heard you’re the best. Are you still giving tours? If so, when?

LCH: I do tours whenever I get 8 people together that want to go. There is no set date — the tours are in the afternoon between 12 and 5 p.m.

AR: In your opinion, are they sea cows or mermaids?

LCH: Mermaids. I think manatees are called sea cows because of the many hours they spend grazing, very similar to land cows. In Belize, they call them “manantee” with an extra “n” thrown into the name.

AR: What is the best thing about manatees?

LCH: Too many things are the best thing. Just take a look at any underwater video or footage of manatees that are not in an area with a lot of human interaction. That’s when you see the real thing. Gentle beautiful animals.

AR: I heard you will be retiring soon, is this true?

LCH: Where did you hear this? Annie Seashore chimes in: “Choco is 82 but is still active; even though he’s slowed down a bit, he still has a lot of energy. Retired? Not really.”

Manatee, Belize wildlife

Photo by USFWS Endangered Species on Flickr
Where to Find Antillean Manatees in Belize

Antillean manatees inhabit the rivers, lagoons, estuaries, and coastal waters of Belize. In their natural habitat of shallow, warm waters, manatees can be found sleeping, eating or traveling… very slowly.

Since manatees are slow-moving, nonaggressive creatures, they are often mistakenly perceived as dumb. Although they do have small brains in relation to their massive bodies, studies have shown manatees to be as adept in experimental tasks as dolphins — they’re just harder to motivate.

So they’re lazy… but hey, with no natural enemies, it seems manatees’ sluggish pace may save them the hassle of dealing with other wildlife.

Manatees’ biggest threats come from humans. Accidents with watercrafts and destruction of the manatee’s natural habitat have put the friendly sea cow on the endangered species list.

While the Antillean manatee is still threatened, Belize has made great strides in protecting its gentle giants.

For Belize travelers who seek adventurous and enlightening wildlife experiences, a trip out to Swallow Caye to explore Belize’s protected manatee wildlife sanctuary with Captain Chocolate as your guide is a must.
A Few Crazy Manatee Facts
Courtesy of Captain Lionel “Chocolate” Heredia of Swallow Caye, Belize
Antillean manatee, Belize wildlife

Photo by USFWS/Southeast on Flickr

They have what are called marching molars; rarely found in mammals, these front molars drop out and new ones are replaced in the back.

Manatees are distant relatives of elephants (who also have marching molars).

They have a split upper lip so each side can move independently with seven muscles on each side. The upper lip and flippers are used to gather food.

Manatees are vegetarians and graze for about 7 hours every day, eating up to 15% of their body weight in seagrass and other vegetation

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#462478 - 04/16/13 11:32 AM Re: Lionel "Chocolate" Heredia [Re: Marty]
Marty Offline

Chocolate forever, well loved conservationist passes away

Leonel “Chocolate” Heredia

A man who dedicated a great portion of his life to conservation has passed away. His efforts brought him critical and international acclaim by environmental groups. He was simply known as “Chocolate” to everyone he met. But eighty-three year old Leonel Heredia had been ill for two weeks and died from the effects of an aneurysm on April twelfth in his Caye Caulker home. The fisherman was a founding member of the Caye Caulker Water Taxi Association, but as the years passed his affinity to nature grew. In the eighties, Chocolate swam amongst the manatees at Swallow Caye and as a guide, he saw more people taking visitors to see manatees. Realizing the need for conservation, he and others started a group in 1996 called Friends of Swallow Caye, which sought to establish Swallow Caye as a Wildlife Sanctuary.  The wildlife sanctuary was established in 2002. But prior to his death, in late 2012, he was interviewed in an Open Your Eyes feature on Caye Caulker. Here’s Chocolate in his own words.

Leonel “Chocolate” Heredia, Deceased

“I used to run on top of them and cut the tail; climb on them—one kill and heng the head fi make I see…oh god. And the day when young says well I’m spry to tell you but I will go with Chocolate one. And that is the day, 2002. Swallow Caye right now has about a hundred animals. When you go there, you noh need to chase them, they come to you. How much manatees eat every day? Ten percent of their body weight. When they deliver; how dehn deliver? It’s hard, I see one and I can tell you how they deliver. I learn a lot so when people come, they want you present yourself when you go on the trail; when you enter this is the front to the south of the area—declared in 2002, nine thousand acres. If anyone of the tour guides say, Chocolate we want sit down with you. I would. I want a person go there with the heart of the animals and make it go from one general to another. I hope my Belizean people enjoy it, appreciate it and continue my legacy when I die.”

Heredia was in the company of his wife Annie when he passed away. In 2012, Oceana presented the environmentalist with the Ocean Hero Award for his outstanding work as a conservationist, which spanned over five decades.

Channel 5


Belize’s environmental giant Lionel “Chocolate’ Heredia memorialized

On April 12, 2013, Belize lost a giant in the conservation world in the person of Lionel “Chocolate” Heredia. Chocolate passed away in Caye Caulker around 1:30PM on that Friday afternoon, with his beloved wife Annie by his side.

His death is a significant loss to Belize as he impacted the country and the tourism industry in ways that are so far-reaching. Of special significance was his fight for the Swallow Caye Manatee Reserve.

On Saturday April 20th, family and friends will gather at Caye Caulker Village in front of his residence at 1PM to celebrate his life. His ashes will be scattered around Swallow Caye on July 7th, a date that coincides with his birthday. The San Pedro Sun joins the Belizean community in expressing condolences to the Heredia family and his friends. In honor of his contribution and in celebration of his life, we take the opportunity to reprint an article printed on our July 26, 2007 issue of the newspaper featuring a passionate, nature-loving Heredia.

July 26, 2007 - Imagine having a passion for something that throughout the years does not flicker but instead flames up. Imagine working tirelessly through the years, fighting what may seem like an uphill battle, one that subconsciously you may be thinking, it is not worth it. Our feature of this week has done just that, his flame burns higher and brighter year after year, and even though it is an uphill battle, it is one that he is willing to fight. Conservation has been a key issue and one that he has valiantly taken up. His efforts were applauded when Swallow Caye was named a Wildlife Sanctuary. This week, we present to you, James Waight Conservation Award winner, Lionel “Chocolate” Heredia.

Born on the tiny island of Ambergris Caye, Chocolate grew up enjoying his life by the Caribbean Sea. His nickname was earned when he displayed his negotiation skills by trading his mother’s sweet bread, which he was assigned to sell, with chocolate candies. Although Chocolate did not receive a formal education, his adventures and life experiences have earned him whatever he’s missed during school lectures. From a young age, he has loved nature and the environment; this love spurred his first actions as a conservationist. His first “save the environment” actions were when he kept a vigilant eye over the turtle hatchlings, keeping predatory birds away by hurling small coconuts at them.

As a teenager, Chocolate began his career in commercial fisheries. This direct interaction with the sea fostered respect for this environment. These years were the most formative in his development as a local environmental enthusiast, as he came to the realization of how deeply his livelihood was entwined with the continued health of the sea.

Chocolate took to boating early, becoming a fisherman by his 18th birthday. Struggling to make a living, he moved to Belize City, called then the old British Honduras (Belize gained independence in 1981), he tried his hand at numerous jobs in and around dusty Belize City, but it wasn’t until the mid-1960s that career inspiration struck.

Chocolate was asked to ferry an American out to the warm waters off-shore to take a look at the herd of Antillean manatees – lovably large, stodgy sea mammals related to the dugong, that were often wishfully mistaken for mermaids by ancient sailors. An idea bubbled to the surface and Chocolate’s new career change was just a tour boat away.

Since setting up business in 1968, Chocolate has been plying the waters on regular trips to see the manatees. These strange, lumbering creatures have become his passion as well as a source of income and Chocolate has become the country’s most vocal advocate for increased funding and patrols to protect the manatee’s habitat and food supply.

Trading the bustling city life, Chocolate moved to Caye Caulker. There he kept offering his tours and also transported people to and from the island and the city. This gave way to the formation of the Caye Caulker Water Taxi Association. In 1982 he opened his gift shop, offering knick knacks to visitors of the island and seeing the need for accommodations, Chocolate went on to open a guest house in 1992.

Chocolate has immersed himself into various conservation efforts, which range from attempting to stop hunters from shooting egrets at Bird Caye to trying to convince his fellow tour operators to shut off their motors at various manatee sites. The efforts of this remarkable man have not gone unnoticed as Mr. James A. Waight himself appointed Chocolate, Honorary Warden at Bird Caye, Northern Lagoon.

Chocolate has worked extensively to protect the manatees and his natural habitat. His fight received much praise and recognition when Swallow Caye Wildlife Sanctuary was signed into legislation on Wednesday, July 10, 2002. The Swallow Caye Sanctuary lobbying efforts began in 1998 and with tears in his eyes, Chocolate accepted his personal copy of the statutory instrument at a special ceremony.

On February 16th, 2003, Chocolate was once again honored when he received The James Waight Conservation Award. This award has evolved to become the most prestigious Belizean award for conservation and it certainly was a testimony to the greatness of this man whose entire life has been dedicated to the service of his country and his people. “Mr. Heredia exemplifies what it means to be a conservationist. He has proven that it is not formal education that makes you an effective conservationist, but one’s love for his environment and his dedication to its protection,” commented Valdemar Andrade, Executive Director, during the official ceremonies.

The Lifetime Achievement Award presented by Minister of Tourism and the Belize Tourism Board was handed to Chocolate on December 5, 2003. He was described as a man who has displayed much resilience and determination in executing many initiatives that have positively impacted our tourism industry. Chocolate’s signature hospitality has made many tourists return to Belize, just for a chance to interact with him and hear his stories. Chocolate, “rightfully deserved this award for being a humble and passionate man, and is a true stalwart of the tourism industry.”

Founding member of the Caye Caulker Branch of the Belize Tourism Industry Association and of the Caye Caulker Water Taxi Association, as well as founding member and past president of the National Association of Specialist and Interpretive Guides, Chocolate also founded Friends of Swallow Caye. This organization won the “Community Based Organization of the Year” for 2006-2007.

During his free time, Chocolate enjoys spending time with his wife, Annie, in the quiet village of Caye Caulker which he calls home. He loves sharing his stories and disseminating his knowledge of Belize’s environment with all. A proud father of Sandra, Cynthia, Leila, Deborah, Maria Lus and Noah, Chocolate is a “legend” on Caye Caulker. An avid conservationist, nationally recognized for his work with manatees and establishing the Swallow Caye Manatee Reserve, Lionel “Chocolate” Heredia’s passion is one that just won’t quit as he continues protecting the environment in “Our Belize Community.”

In June of 2012, Heredia was presented with the Ocean Hero Award from Oceana in Belize for his lifetime service and dedication to marine education and advocacy and promoting sustainable use of Belize’s marine resources. His work as a conservationist for the sea manatee is a true example of being a leader and role model in the protection of the ocean’s precious creatures.

San Pedro Sun


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#462504 - 04/16/13 05:58 PM Re: Lionel "Chocolate" Heredia [Re: Marty]
Marty Offline
Oceana Pays Tribute to Marine Conservationist Lionel Heredia

Oceana is saddened by the news of the passing of one of Belize’s first Marine Conservationist, Lionel “Chocolate” Heredia, who was a true Belizean patriot contributing immensely to the protection of marine resources, especially the manatees.

In 2012, Oceana presented “Chocolate” its Ocean Hero Award for his outstanding work spanning over five decades as a conservationist when that term had not even become popular or even considered a career field.

“We must celebrate the life of our brother Chocolate and always remember him as a role model because even though he has parted this earthly life his works and contribution to this nation remain with us. And it is his work all of us in the conservation community must continue as we stand on the shoulder of this conservation giant,” said Oceana V.P.

Audrey Matura-Shepherd.

A brief History:

Lionel “Chocolate” Heredia spent much of his adult life in and around the sea as a fisherman and later as a tour guide. He built up a healthy respect for the environment, knowing how important conservation was without even knowing what the word meant. Chocolate had known about the manatees near Swallow Caye for over 50 years. In the 80s he started to bring tourists there to show them the beautiful manatees of Belize.

In the early to mid-90s more and more tour guides were found visiting the area. Everyonewas getting in the water with the animals and Chocolate came to realize how important it was to set up a protected area around Swallow Caye. In 1996 he and other concerned individuals from all over Belize formed a community-based conservation association called Friends of Swallow Caye. It was set up to promote the designation of this area as a Wildlife Sanctuary.

Success came in July 2002, when the Hon. Minister of Natural Resources signed the Statutory Instrument declaring the Swallow Caye Wildlife Sanctuary. The protected area is now co-managed by Friends of Swallow Caye and the Belize Forest Department.


Rest in Peace our friend!

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#462566 - 04/17/13 12:26 PM Re: Lionel "Chocolate" Heredia [Re: Marty]
Marty Offline
RIP Lionel "Chocolate" Heredia | Swallow Caye Wildlife Sanctuary, Belize | Korinek Photography

Swallow Caye Wildlife Sanctuary, Belize

RIP “Chocolate”; a tale of passion

On April 12, 2013, Lionel “Chocolate” Heredia passed away at the age of 83. RIP Chocolate.

Lionel "Chocolate" Heredia | Swallow Caye Wildlife Sanctuary

There are times in life when you’re lucky enough to meet someone who doesn’t just have a passion, but who has lived their passion and created a legacy from it. Chocolate’s legacy is the Swallow Caye Wildlife Sanctuary off the coast of Caye Caulker, Belize.

There you will find the creatures that he has been ferrying tourists out to see since 1968. Not one to benefit through the exploitation of these manatees, he has worked tirelessly to protect them and their habitat. He’s a truly successful eco-tourism story. 

His effort paid off with creating of Swallow Caye Wildlife Sanctuary in 2002. As the legend goes, he teared up when he received his copy of the statutory instrument that created this sanctuary.

In 2003 he was awarded The James Waight Conservation Award and The Lifetime Achievement Award from the Belize Tourism Board.

Chocolate at work | Swallow Caye Wildlife Sanctuary, Belize
Chocolate at work
Meeting Chocolate

When I first met Chocolate, I was amazed how much energy and zest for life he still had being in his 70′s. It wasn’t long until I found out exactly what kept that fire going; the manatees.

How passionate is he about them? He makes his own signs that he puts up in the Sanctuary to warn passing boats of the protected habitat. We saw a bunch of them on our way out.

When we got out there, I was struck by the emotion that he expressed towards these manatees. He really did love them. He talked about them with sure care and compassion. His eyes got misty. There is no doubt that it was his passion that directly has had a direct impact on manatee conservation in Belize.

He clearly views tourism as a means to an end. The end being the protection of manatees and conservation of their habitat. pretty awesome that he was able to protect manatees, make a living and spend his life with the animals he loved.

Manatee | Swallow Caye Wildlife Sanctuary, BelizeFinal Thoughts

Although I feel some sadness that Chocolate has passed, I believe that we should also be celebrating Chocolate’s life. How many people fell stuck in their jobs pinning for work that means something to them?

Here’s a man who followed his passion and found not only joy, but also success in doing so.

He’s probably been more successful that many university graduates even though he had no formal education. This shows me once again that it is action that is most important, not just the idea.

In Chocolate’s case he had both the dream and took steps to make it a reality. That’s the lesson I’m going to take from his life.

Goodbye Chocolate, you’ve been an inspiration to us all.

Chocolate's Handmade Signs | Swallow Caye Wildlife Sanctuary, Belize

Chocolate’s Handmade Signs

Source


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#462744 - 04/20/13 11:48 AM Re: Lionel "Chocolate" Heredia [Re: Marty]
Marty Offline
CELEBRATE CHOCOLATE TODAY

Dear Editor, Amandala

Hello from Caye Caulker. Thank you so much for your wonderful article on my husband, Chocolate Heredia.

I would like to make an important correction. His death was not related to the prostate cancer. He actually died from a ruptured aortic aneurysm. I was proud to help him keep the cancer at bay for over 10 years. He died with it, and not from it.

He was the love of my life and my best friend. I’ll miss him so much!

Please note: there will be a Celebration of Chocolate’s Life on Saturday, April 20th, from 1-3 p.m. Everyone is invited. Please come out and join us!

Thanks again for a great article!

Regards,
Annie Seashore-Heredia

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