Autobiography: Raymond Denis Auxillou Jr. 1937 - . For my great grandchildren!

Me! Raymond Denis Auxillou Jr.
Taken about 1954-55 while in Canadian Army.

My grandmother: Mary Ellen Auxillou a widow!
My grandmother had to raise two children herself.

This is for my grandchildren and great grandchildren. I will try to cover the generations of Auxillou's with as much as material as I still have.

I was born in Sheppards Bush, London, England in 1937 before World War 2 began. The blitz of England is well covered in history books. As a child I played in the bombed out ruins of brick buildings. My mother and I were buried alive twice during German air raids. We survived inside these small steel cages people had in their basements. With some drinking water, a blanket and pillows. We were eventually dug out by rescuers. I was shipped off to Grimsby during the blitz on the NE coast of England. It was here I lived and watched the air raids and dog fights in the skys above, by the night time searchlights trying to capture enemy fighters. As a child we played in the streets of bombed buildings. To me it seemed normal! I was happy. Some of my school friends were maimed or killed by picking up booby trap bombs the Germans dropped called clappers. Once during an air raid the building across the street blew up from a bomb and a flying brick hit me in the head. I ran home to mother crying and fainted dead away. But a few stitches from the visiting doctor fixed it. In those days, we had a hand cast iron pump for water and an outdoor backyard privy for toilet. Another time a Messerschmidt fighter was strafing the Grimsby docks and tried to kill me, but was unable to lower the guns low enough as it flew just above the chimney tops. The line of bullets pockmarked the lintel of the door in which I was crouching. I wasn't afraid, only curious. It all happened so fast. Uncle Bill came home from being a merchant seaman. He lost his leg due to being torpedoed. He had been in ships torpedoed twice by submarines.
My father was a behind the lines British Officer, French speaking spy for MI-6. The first time I remember seeing him, I was 4 years old. He had been behind in France for two years and escaped when the Gestapo had swept up his Resistance Movement Escape Line. Dad made me a Spitfire airplane out of carving a broom handle. He also taught me to handle a pistol and a Lee Enfield military rifle. I never fired them just practised taking them apart and aiming them.
In 1945, Senior British Army ranks families were allowed to join their husbands in Occupied Territory. My dad was a Colonel then in Vienna, Austria. This German city was divided into a Russian zone, a British Zone, a French Zone and a USA zone. The Russians were raping and looting their section of the city. We even had a British officer visiting female nurse raped by three Russian soldiers outside our house on the lawn, in which we lived. She was a friend of my mother's. It was during this time I got hit with a ricochet machine gun bullet from German holdouts and Hitler Youth in the leg. We British kids went to German schools, but fought with the German kids with real pistols and grenades in the Vienna Woods. I remember getting my weapons taken away from me on the hill next to the Schonnbrun Palace in the woods by British soldiers who scolded us. I must have been about eight years old or so? The Russians packed the basement of the big 399 room, Schonnbrun Hotel with explosives and blew the hotel up trying to wipe out the Allied High Command during a celebration. I slept in that hotel that night and was in the small section that survived the blast. I was covered in window glass pieces, but otherwise alright. My dad was kidnapped by the Russians twice and traded back for someone German that they wanted. Usually a scientist. At one point I ended up in the Russian Zone by mistake. You could go in on a tram car, but not get back out. A little old lady led me through the sewers into the French zone to escape. I climbed up the rusty iron steps out into the street and took the correct tram car home. The Russian Zone was swarming with soldiers who were raping women and throwing them into trucks to take back to their sleeping quarters. As I was dressed in short leather pants, they didn't bother me, but I was sure scared.
Dad got appointed Liason Officer in the French Zone in the Tyrol region of Austria. We lived in Igles a holiday resort up on the mountain range overlooking the city of Innsbruck. We had a fancy car and a fancy house and a chauffer that was a prisoner S.S., as driver. I don't know what Dad did during those years, but I was often taken along as COVER on trips to pick up British deserters living with German women. Or taking loads of arms going to Italy and refugees from our house up on the mountain. Everything was stored in the garage. Some Air Commodore would deliver the stuff to the house and Dad and I would take a jeep over the mountains by back logging roads into Italy and store the guns in piles of cordwood firewood. The refugees were met by someone and taken off, to eventually go to Palestine, or Argentina.
The Army was disbanded in 1949 and Dad immigrated to Canada. My mother and by then me and my twin sisters joined him later. I saw my first candy in my life at the Airport at Gander in Newfoundland. The deal was our family were indentured labor for two years to pay for the passage. Slavery by another name! We lived in a little one room cabin on a farm near Woodstock, Ontario. The ice would form on the walls one inch thick, in winter from our breathing. But we ate better than in Europe or England. In Europe the truck loads of dead people from starvation went around every day to pick up the bodies. It was normal and I never thought much about it. Though on a train in France I was disturbed by ten thousand children killing other children when I threw a sandwich bread crust out the window. The population of Canada then, was about 2.5 million people scattered over 5000 miles of frontier. I was alway an outdoors person. Learned to survive in the woods and trap muskrats, shoot squirrels for bounty and all those things that kids love to do. I must have been 10 or 11 years old when I got my first birthday present single shot .22 rifle. I joined the Canadian Army for the Korean War. Was in the Signal Corps as a radio technician. The war finished too soon and being under age, I had entered at 15 years old in a Boy Soldier program, I resigned at age 18 years. Then I joined the reserves where I eventually made Seargant over the next five years. Went back to High School, got into trouble over sex and girls as I was a virgin and knew nothing about the subject. I was a good stage magician and hypnotist in my high school years. A holiday in Cuba in 1959 saw me with Castro as they entered the city of Havana. My companion and I had a wild three weeks. The Tropicana Club, stayed at the Riveria Hotel FREE and other persuits. I loved the tropical Caribbean. The revolutionaries taking over Havana in those few weeks were very rough.  They killed one woman in front of me in the street gutters with rifle butts because she was shouting at them, that Castro's mother was a whore.
  I explored most of Canada and the USA during those years. Hitchiking mostly and singing for my supper with a ukelele. Rode the freight train cars, slept in hobo camps and generally lived an interesting life, mostly during the summer school holidays. One time, I hitchiked to Hollywood, California and back to Ontario, Canada in one week and mailed my parents postcards to prove it. Worked as a cowboy in Alberta on the last large round up and trail drive in North American history. Spent a summer at the Banff School of Fine Arts surrounded by young girls studying ballet, art and music. I didn't pay, but was tolerated as the large girl student body didn't have many male friends for their romantic kissing games.
  Eventually I wound up in British Honduras, flat broke. Slept on the fishing tables at the port market. Eventually got married and had a family and lived on Caye Caulker most of my life. Here I built boats, taught school and started the tourist business. I fished and did whatever it took to lead an outdoor life and earn a living. I loved island life, boats and the sea and the warm colorful Caribbean.
   During my twenties, I worked as an unofficial SPY for the British Army camp Intelligence Officer in what was then the colony. He would send me to Guatemala as nobody in the British Army were allowed to go to this dangerous country. I was expendable, deniable and young and foolish.  But I enjoyed myself. Once in Puerto Barrios I was interrogated and sentenced to be shot in the morning. A bribed guard got me the use of a telephone and I called the British Consul, who called Ian Munn, the British son-in-law of the President Fuentes of Guatemala, who called the Commodante who was going to shoot me and ordered him to let me go. I was put on the plane for Honduras the next day. Everybody else with me in jail was killed as fighting had broken out in Guatemala City in a revolution and airplanes were dropping bombs on the airstrip. 
   This was about a decade before the British Army Airport Camp Intelligence officer, I think he was also a Captain paymaster; asked me to bring him intelligence of troop movements in Guatemala.  He was interested in anything, as the local Garrison of 200 troops in the colony had no information coming out of England.  I don't know what the British Embassy were doing over there?
  This was at a time that Guatemala Generals were rattling sabers and building troop encampments on the border.  The pseudo counter insurgency was going on and over 200,000 civilians were killed by the army.  To have a map at a highway army checkpoint, even a Esso Highway Map would lable you as a subversive and you would have your hands tied behind your back and forced to kneel in the ditch and get your brains blown out.  I remember reading in the newspapers of Guatemala City, how the reigning Miss Universe had returned from her  World Pageant and when interviewed on the news expressed how amazed she was at democracy in the outside world and how she thought Guatemala would be such a beautiful country under democracy.  The next weekend her naked body was discovered under a Highway bridge, gang raped, tortured and mutilated.  I made several trips into Guatemala.  In one, I penetrated the Guatemala Army Classified Map Section in a group of American Oil Geologists posing as one of them.  In a classified well guarded map room, I located fabulous maps of British Honduras and purloined them successfully.  Back in British Honduras at the Army Camp the officers went wild and asked to keep them.  I did so and a couple of weeks later, got word I was wanted at Airport Camp and left from my home on Caye Caulker.  A Brigadeer  had flown out from the UK and wanted to interview me.  I sat in a conference room and the Brigadeer was clearly in charge, but there were local high camp officers, like the Captain and Major and some others that came out from the UK in the entourage.  The interview didn't seem to go well from my point of view.  I was asked to explain how I got the maps?  They were apparently a complete surprise to Whitehall in the UK?  The British Army were using blank spaced UNKNOWN territory maps of the 19th century.  These maps I stole from the Guatemalan Army Headquarters were less than 90 days old, recently made by aerial jet surveys.  In hindsight, I guess the USA had made them for Guatemala?  I'm sure the fur flew back in England between the military and the other members of the British Cabinet.  Houses and roads and creeks were on the maps that were brand new, including the ammunition dumps.  I was asked about the chances between the Guatemala Army and the British Army Garrison and frankly said they would be wiped out in 24 hours.  Lots of insults and protestions there from the local officers.  But it was true, as the 200 man Garrison was unprepared, basically unarmed and were essentially a small trip wire, expendable force.
  What happened over the next couple of years was due to my intelligence reports that I brought back is my belief?  The Garrison was reinforced from 200 to 1200 soldiers and eventually to 2000 soldiers.  A contract was let to map the country, from jet aerial photographic surveys and formed the basis of the current maps in Belize.  The airstrip was contracted to be lengthened and strengthened, to handle military jet cargo planes like the Hercules.  This turned the strip into the jet transportation usable Belize International Airport, it more or less is today. Though it has been expanded in the last twenty years.
    I had some close calls in Panama once, when caught in a military zone. Another time with Secret Police for Generalismo Somoza in Managua, Nicaragua, who robbed and beat me, and the hotel and military barracks on Tiger Island on the Pacific side of Honduras got shotup by raiders one night, while I was staying in the hotel, by Nicaraguan Sandanistas from a boat. Despite the killing in the Salvadoran civil war, I never saw any violence myself during the Salvador war.
   In Belize though, sea pirates were common along the islands and atolls and still are today out on the Cayes. Was boarded and robbed a couple of times and turned the tables on pirates twice with the help of tourists, though we were unarmed and they were not. But it was at night and they couldn't tell, all we had were knives and spearguns, while they had pistols and shotguns. The pirates were Belizeans, either from Belize City, or Mullins River area.
  For education I had the two year Belize Teachers College, which I thought was mostly a waste of time. They could have taught everything in three months was my opinion!    Became a marine architect, shipwright and Ham Radio Operator from my Canadian Army days. I must have built a dozen boats, the biggest about 45 feet.  For a dozen years, I was a locally famous magician.  This was during my children's formative years before they were 12 and we all had a great time together, learning illusions and tricks and preparing for performances in schools and around the country as Raymundo the Magician.  Went to several International Brotherhood of Magician Conventions in the USA and the UK. Became a scuba instructor and eventually sailed all the Caribbean, the Great Lakes, and Pacific Coast of North America, which was my real love in life. I always wanted to sail around the world, but never made it. Now I'm too old! It's been a great life though! ( grin! )

I enjoyed a lifetime of adventure, travel and exploration. Wouldn't change it for the world. During my life I held different qualifications. A Marine Architect qualification. Shipwright skills in wood boats, fiberglass boats and ferro cement. Designed and built about 24 boats up to 50 foot size. Held a 2000 ton Spanish Honduras Merchant Marine Captains license and sailed the Western Caribbean Sea with cargo buying and selling often, from country to country. Held Amateur Ham Radio licenses in different countries. The internet has replaced Ham Radio today though. Had an airplane back in 1961, an Ercoupe. Bought it in Miami and flew it solo to British Honduras around the Gulf of Mexico and via Mexico to the colony. I'm currently building an airplane in my backyard. A two place 1929 Pietenpol. Held Scuba Instructors certifications, Lifeguard, Pool Operators, etc. Spent a good deal of seasonal commercial fishing in British Honduras, from deep water red snapper, to conchs and lobsters. Tried shrimping as well off Corpus Christi, Texas. When I was in my teens I worked as a cowboy, both in Arizona by Winslow and also up in Alberta, Canada for summers. Spent three teen years in active Army service and then about 5 years in Reserves. Taught myself several musical instruments, but music I enjoy, but I'm an amateur, just not talented at it. At one time taught school and got certified with an Associate Degree as a teacher from the Belize Teachers College. Through force of circumstances became in my prime a pretty good marine diesel mechanic but never certified. Usually had to fix the darn things in rough seas and high waves when everything was going wrong.

My grandmother and grandfather with children.
My grandfather Louis Auxillou, my grandmother Mary Ellen Auxillou with my father and Yvonne his sis.

My grandfather Louis Auxillou, machine gunner WW1
He was one of a million killed at the battle of the Somme, WW1 He is tall guy in the back center.

My grandmother is in the chair.
My mother Tina (Lewis)Auxillou standing with glasses.

My dad's sister Yvonne (Auxillou) Burt and Jack
This photo was taken about 1947 of my Aunt Yvonne

This is me Ray Auxillou Jr. about 1998
My wife Silvia, daughter Wendy by previous marriage and three granddaughters from Wendy.

Two grandchildren: Isabella and Tyler
This photo was taken about 1998-99.

The Burt Family photo has my aunt Yvonne on the left, Jack and John Burt. Jack was her husband. My mother in the middle with glasses, my grandmother on the chair. Maureen with the dark hair. my Aunt-in-law with her two children Rae and Toney Hones. This photo was about 1970 taken at the house in Jesmond Thorpe, Surrey. Nice grand stone house with big yard.

My grandmother was an Irish woman and in London, England on a midwifery course, when she met the Frenchman Louis Auxillou who was with a bank. They married and had two children. WW1 widowed my grandmother Mary Ellen and she was left to raise two children alone. She did this by being a seamstress is how I remember her into her old age. My father Raymond Auxillou Sr. and my aunt his sister Yvonne Auxillou. She married Jack Burt. My father married my mother Tina Lewis, both before WW11. Must have been around 1935 or 1936? My mom and dad were seperated by World War 11. My dad was a special agent for MI-6 and left behind the German lines before Dunkirk occured to organize resistance movements, as he was bi-lingual. I believe my grandmother had lived and raised her two children in Nice. Louis Auxillou my grandfather has his name on a WW1 memorial in the center of Carcasonne, France.

My grandfather's father was a Legionaire for Napolean 3rd. and was in Mexico during that time. Somebody has the medals for that? I believe my sister Annette?

My dad had three children! Me born before WW11 and my twin sisters born in Schonnbrun Palace about 1946 in occupied Austria after the War. I in turn have had seven children. Three boys who are Canadians and four girls who are Belizean born. One boy has since died. I've lost track but have about 13 or 14 grandchildren in 2004.

My Dad and mother! ( Ray Sr. and Tina)
Not sure when they died? But Mom died first and dad about ten years later.

Me in the middle! Mark on the left and Steve right
Two of my three sons. Steve died a dozen years ago. Isabella is his daughter. This was in July 1986.

This photo above of my two oldest sons, Mark and Steve on July 1986 at the birth of the third son of mine, Ryan Andrew MacKenzie in Toronto area. Taken in the hospital with the mother Merle MacKenzie ( out of the photo ). Merle's estranged husband and girlfriend were there at the birth also. Bit complicated in the relationships going on at the time. I was about 49 yrs old.

Ilna and Ray at Sharon's wedding 1989
Ilna and I had been seperated for years and later divorced.

Eldest daughter Sharonas Miss Belize in the 1980's
Sharon went to the Miss Universe contest in Peru.

My daughter Wendy at her travel agency on island.
This is Wendy in 2002 on Caye Caulker. She has since built 4 rental condos on the TRUST property.

Youngest daughter Tina in 2002 on left
Daughter Tina and Dad in middle, went to visit Phylis Dart at Ektun Lodge, a close family friend.

I wrote a lot of books in my life. Started about 1967 with a couple of books on the Commercial Fish of Belize 1967 and Captain Ray's Fishing Guide to British Honduras. You can find these first printed on the internet free. Still the only scientific study done of marine life of British Honduras.
Did a number of thinly veiled fiction novels, which were slightly biographical with some liberties. These were THE BELIZE CONNECTION, THE BELIZE VORTEX, THE BLUE HOLE AND THE BELIZE SECRET SERVICE SARIN PROJECT.

There were a whole series of Civics and Government books for Belizean students, attempting to educate a colonial and post colonial population in constitutional and management matters. The series went up to the 7th Edition before I quit on that score and started the Internet Library "Belize Electronic Library" It's still on the web, but not supported much anymore. Did it for nine years and then quit that. Did a whole slew of financial books to do with trading stocks and options. The best one I still use for my own reference was: WALLSTREET INVESTORS - MONEY MAKING CLASSICAL -TRICKS, TIPS & METHODS. I still refer to it myself. There were a whole row of booklets on OEX Option Trading, Spread Trading of Options and various trading books and methods like Japanese Candlestick Charting before such things became more popular as they are today. The wife and I co-authored the definitive EARLY HISTORY OF BELIZE book. Like most of my books these were small printings and eventually sold out and went out of print. The EARLY HISTORY OF BELIZE book though, I put on the internet. You can download it free and print it out yourself. It is the only real early history of Belize up until the British invasion. Taken from archival materials.

Ray with new wife Silvia on their sailboat 1994
At this time both Ray and Silvia were living on their 30 ft sailboat SOLITUDE in Oleta Bay, Florida

When I was about 47 years of age, I suffered a heart attack on the island of Caye Caulker.  When I was 49 years old, I suffered another one.  No doctors were available and I essentially lay on the floor for 16 hours before daring to move.  Several of my friends, a lighthouse keeper out at Mauger Caye at Turneffe Atoll died from a heart attack at 52 years old.  Another bumboat tugboat captain friend, in the port on the mainland also suffered a heart attack at 47 years old.  It was then I resolved to change my lifestyle and better do something different.  Whatever was happening, whether it was a salt diet of preserved fish, or the strain of shoving heavy boats over shoals by hand, my life had obviously to be revamped.  I had also had a couple of broken ribs in a fall and both shoulder sockets were dislocating for no reason at all, upon small movements when working my boats.  So, I beached my sailboat and moved to Florida on a part time basis.  Here I got various certifications and became a Pool Manager and lifeguard trainer  for the Parks and Recreation Department, for about 5 months each year.  This went on for the next 8 years of my life and I lived in a VW camper bus in a friend's yard. Spring, summer and Fall in Florida and the winters running tourist snorkeling trips for the winter season.  My wife from Caye Caulker and I had been seperated for a half a dozen years or more and during this time we divorced. She had inherited a lot of very valuable beach front land, got a government pension and big cash settlement and was comfortably wealthy.  The story I got from my girls, was; she didn't want to share her assets and so asked for a divorce.  My four girls by now were finished college and in search of adventure, travel, and eventually their own family lives.  I kept one lot on the beach of the island as a security blanket and my sailboat, in case I needed to come back and run tourist snorkeling trips again for a livelihood. I saved my money and took life easy, writing books and novels in South Florida.  It was at this time I got into trading stocks and then OEX Options on the Chicago Board of Trade through the internet.  I have been in financial trading for about 18 years and still do it today.  Though at a minimal level today, at 67 years old of this writing.
  During this time in Florida I searched for a life companion.  Life wasn't much fun by oneself.  My favorite pickup place was the weekend ballroom dancing crowd and older men were in short supply for women who were single, divorced or widowed.  One Canadian lady and I lived together on a borrowed stainless steel 48 ft motorsailer for about 18 months.  Some friend was going through bankruptcy and wanted the motorsailer gone.  So Merle and I went off to the Bahamas in the motorsailer for a year, along with her daughter.  It was amazing the amount of women in their forties, that wanted babies.  I was often asked to donate my efforts.  Merle, the Canadian lady was one and she got pregnant and went home to her mother in Canada to have Ryan Andrew Mackenzie my last son.  He must be about 18 years old now?  I was never able to keep contact.  Merle had still been married and her legal husband and my two older sons in Canada were at the birth of Ryan in Toronto.  Her mother died, she sold the house, got divorced and re-married is the story I heard, but I lost track of her and my son and to this date have never seen him since he was a happy cheerful gurgling little baby. I went through a half dozen ladies before meeting my wife Silvia, who at the time, was literally a starving Library technician. But she was ambitious and gutsy and since neither of us had much; me my VW camper in Miami, a lot on the beach at Caye Caulker, then worth about $150,000 USA and a fishing shack, plus a 25 ft sailboat parked next to the shack, it seemed like a fun match to see if in my old age I could start again with a family life.  Silvia was energetic and 14 years younger than me.  An immigrant and divorced in California,  but originally from Bogota, Colombia.  We have been together now about 14 years and married for the last eight years.  I'd say our marriage has worked out very well for both of us!  We lived in rental houses for a while, then bought another sailboat and lived on that.  Silvia was ambitious and we put money into her education and she gradually got her Bachelors degree, then her Masters in Library Science and she went up very quickly from a mere technician to an Assistant Library Director in South Florida.
  With her savings and my nest egg, we easily had $25,000 USA and bought a house with 20% down and a 30 year mortgage low monthly payment.  I sold the sailboat Solitude, as I was getting too old to bend over and do the engine and maintainance work on it.  With cash we paid off the  mortgage principal and got the house free and clear, in three and a half years.  Then we bought a gentleman's 2.5 acre ranchette in central Florida and decided to invest in Belize again, but someplace different than the island of Caye Caulker, which I loved and had spent most of my life. We were looking toward retirement.  At this time, my daughters returned home from their world travels and adventures and three of them ended up back on the island as the best place for them in the world to live.  I put my beach lot into the Auxillou Trust and made them Trustees and they since have torn down my wood home and built concrete condos for rental and as homes.  Essentially I went to Caye Caulker with nothing and I left Caye Caulker with nothing.
  Silvia and I bought a government house in Hillview out in Western Belize for cash and are in the process of building a Youth Back Pack Hostel and interested in other ventures in that part of the country of Belize.  Currently we split our time between living in Florida and Western Belize.
By May, 2006 we were trying to sell our house and small ranchette in Florida and retire to our new house and Falconview Back Pack Adventure Hostel, of 1850 square feet in Hillview, Cayo District, Belize, Central America. We were also under construction at the back with a three story concrete building, to put in a private apartment for ourselves and an efficiency for a guest. The Maya Mountains Annual Folk Music Festival we organized, had now completed two years on the Christmas Break and with the help of my four daughters, we had identified the problems with Marimba music in the West of the country and given out three music scholarships. Sharon my eldest daughter bought the trophies and we were slated to start the Annual Tour de Belize Alps, Mountain Bike Race sometime in 2006. All the immediate Auxillou family wanting to do something for the youth of Belize for it's growth.

Falconview Back Pack Adventure Hostel our new home
In May, 2006 we were still trying to sell out in Florida desperately wanting to return to Belize.

My old beach house home on Caye Caulker
My four daughters have condos here. 1993 Wife Silvia on steps! Cabin is gone now!

Silvia and Ray about 2000.
Happy photo! I was about 64 yrs then.

Me, Ray Auxillou, going to be 68 this year.
Oh to be 22 years again and do it all over!

The story of our retirement for Ray and Silvia Auxillou, in Hillview, Santa Elena town in the Belize Alps foothills. Two years up to May, 2008 CLICK HERE FOR THIS WEB PAGE AND LATEST PHOTOS.

About 48 years old, novelist writer Ray Auxillou
I am seen here in my hammock in my fishing shack home, on the beach at Caye Caulker

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