Ambergris Caye Caye Caulker HELP! Visitor Center Businesses Lodging

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#219484 - 06/02/05 11:19 AM Paradise Down  

To the totally misinformed Anon Diver. Lets finally get the air clear on the subject of the accident that happened in March.

1. It was an ACCIDENT, don't be stupid, accidents have happened to every dive shop on this island.

2. There would have been no physical harm to anyone that day had everyone including the person who got hurt listen to the rules that are repeated evry morning, namely, STAY INSIDE THE BOAT AND REMAIN SEATED. This individual was sitting on the very point of the bow without any guard rail. His fault.

3. There are rough waves out there, ask the cruise ship that got hit by a 24' wave a few weeks ago.

4. I did feel bad for my employee, ask him his opinion. Who do you think got the chopper here so fast? This individual has received his pay check every week since the accident, isn't that an apology?

5. You need to wake up and mind your own business, be brave, and use your real name.

O. J. Holden

#219485 - 06/02/05 01:46 PM Re: Paradise Down  
Joined: Nov 2005
Posts: 477
Caye Connect Offline
Caye Connect  Offline

In the immediate aftermath of the accident, everybody did and said things that they shouldn't have. It is truly unfortunate that a rift has developed on the island and mud slinging has occured. We cannot let this continue, it helps no one.

Ellis and his family (especially his sister Ellen) are in a grave financial situation. Bottom line is they have huge bills and he still needs a lot more $expensive$ surgery.

Paradise Down, in my opinion, is a very reputable operation. My wife and I did our PADI OW with them earlier in the year. I did 4 dives with them in May. I even set up a private charter (snorkel and dive) for my wedding party it was FANTASTIC. I found them to be safe, courteous, patient with rookies and knowledgable about the local sites.

I also know that beyond the salary OJ has been paying, he has also paid some bills directly and donated trips to the weekly raffles. Based on what I know of his character, I expect OJ will continue to do what he can to help Ellis pay his bills. He feels terrible about what has happened.

Everyone on the island should look forward and stop spreading BS from the past. Ellis's situation is BAD, no doubt. Paradise Down and many other local businesses are doing what they can to help.

In my opinion, the CC village council or even the gov't of Belize should mandate FULL INSURANCE COVERAGE either through DAN scuba insurance or other means for everybody on a scuba boat. This will not stop accidents from happening, but it will ensure that when accidents do happen the victims can get the best available medical attention and not be left with a $50,000 bill...

Please see for more information on his situation and please donate what you can afford to his medical fund. If you find yourself in Caye Caulker, stop by Seaside Cabanas and buy a raffle ticket, you can win great prizes donated by local businesses.

Alex Sullivan

#219486 - 06/03/05 01:13 AM Re: Paradise Down  
Joined: Feb 2001
Posts: 32
Cookie Offline
Cookie  Offline
I too support OJ and Patti who are dear friends of mine, whom I met through certifying at Paradise down five years ago.

I have always known them to be upstanding, and very caring of their staff, even those who have not been as reliable or trustworty . I know of several instances where they went above and beyond what was required to help out both friends and employees.

I personally was on CC shortly after the tragic accident and saw first hand how devastated both Patti and OJ were about the situation. I know that they are assisting the family as much as they possibly can at this time.

Thanks knickerbocker for your support as well. Patti and OJ do not deserve to be pummeled in this forum or any other arena for an accident that was not their fault. Trust they are doing what they can.

Choose to dive with PD or not, that is your choice but please do not throw stones at these folks.

#219487 - 06/03/05 07:31 AM Re: Paradise Down  

right on!

#219488 - 06/03/05 12:00 PM Re: Paradise Down  

If you are hurt badly on Caye Caulker you send some one to call OJ- even at 2 AM. He may be your only hope.He rescues you without charge, often from his own pocket. This is well known on Caye Caulker.
Many folks think of him as a hero. I am one of them.

#219489 - 06/03/05 01:09 PM Re: Paradise Down  

right on right on!!

#219490 - 08/19/05 02:37 PM Re: Paradise Down  
Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 19
reefdiver Offline
Junior Member
reefdiver  Offline
I too have known OJ and Patty for some 4 years. I consider them to be my best freinds on the island and would trust them with my life as I have many times diving. Back off of the Holdens. They are everyone's friend.

Tony Raunikar

#219491 - 08/19/05 04:40 PM Re: Paradise Down  


By resurrecting this topic you have unwittingly set up O.J. and Patty up for another vicious attack. Thought that bucket was full of water? Sorry it was gasoline!

#219492 - 08/21/05 02:45 PM Re: Paradise Down  

I knew nothing about this until I was asked a few days ago to contribute to this boy's medical costs. Having seen the photographs of his injuries and knowing what medical costs are, I can understand that his family are now in penury.

But isn't it already required by the BTB that before they issue a Tour Operator's licence each boat used by the operator must carry insurance for all occupants? How come the "generosity" or otherwise of his employer even comes into the picture?

#219493 - 08/28/05 11:40 AM Re: Paradise Down  
Joined: Jul 2005
Posts: 33
sdiver Offline
sdiver  Offline
I have visited Caye Caulker 3 times in the past 10 months and have dived with Paradise Down each time. I can't say enough about O.J's., Patti's and their employees' attention to safety! The rules aren't repeated one time, they are repeated several times - very specifically - with opportunities to ask questions at every point! I, too, am a NAUI Instructor and recognize dedication to safety when I see it! Unfortunately there will be the occasional diver who forgets, or chooses not to follow a rule. Sadly, accidents happen...

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