1. Allan Forman and JD Schulz Lowe
2 & 3. Brochure advertising Coral Beach Divers Limited, British Honduras, 1972. That's JD diving on the cover of the brochure.
I guess my friends there are dwindling as time goes by. I used to stay with either Alan and Helen Foreman, or Maria and Sam..I came originally in 1971 with Jody Risser and Clarke Bates and we built the Coral Beach Divers Assoc and trained local divers, like Alan and his brother Silvan.
I sat up until 3:30am last night looking thru the history of photos you have posted, and I am amazed at how the good ole days were back when I first found the Island, and I'm saddened to learn of the decline in conch and starfish.
We built the diveshop with conch shells in the cement foundation. Every Island you went to had large piles of conch shells for the taking on the beaches, and every local had conch pearls in his pocket to sell to the scattered tourists.
I always felt guilty for bringing scuba to the Island, because i thought it enabled them to dive deeper and deeper for the smaller and smaller conch..
I remember chasing a manatee in Alan's boat once, and Alan bellowing "Beef from the Sea!" I was horrified and he told me I had eaten it already (thinking it was cow-beef stew)...
I remember him telling me about going to the Island where the Brown Pelicans nested (can't remember the name of the Island or beach)..and telling me they collected the eggs to eat, and I told him they shouldn't do that because they were becoming extinct! and he told me no no, there were thousands of them, thousands.
I remember a common sight was seeing a turtle lying on it's back on the beach, and someone cutting it's head off with a machete for food, and that sickened me, but I chastised myself for trying to tell these people what I thought they were doing wrong when it was my people who were screwing up the ecology. I have so many wonderful memories of my times in San Pedro.
It all started when i met and began living with a guy who had a business while he was in college of all things diving..selling Voit and US Divers, teaching PADI, certifing instructors, and also work on anything from cleaning hulls underwater to patching leaks to pipelines..So after 3 years or so I met Jody Risser, who was in one of our classes, Veteriarian, and I fell head over heels for him..left the diver, moved to the Vet...anyway, Jody and I got a bunch of tanks and dive equipment..so then we got with friends and collectively brainstormed what to do with ..and someone suggested Ambergris Caye in British Honduras, so Jody and i went down there, staying in Belize City (without luggage, as it was lost) at the Bliss hotel..took a Boat to the Islands, I remember Caulker and then San Pedro..walked into Holiday Hotel and met Celi Grief..and from there found out we needed to join forces with Coral Beach Hotels if we wanted to get involved..and we did..so looking at my pics it looks like the first trip down was in 71, and the dive shop was built and operational in 72-73, and those were the fun times...
Photographs courtesy JD Schulz Lowe
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