Mexican government sources confirmed over the weekend that the dead body of British sailor and scuba instructor Paul Whitehouse, 45, was found in the mangroves adjacent to La Paz Bay. This brings the tally of expat sailors killed by Hurricane Odile to three. Previously, the body of Whitehouse’s British partner, Simone Wood, 47, was also found in the mangroves, and German native Guenter Trebbow, 76, was found drowned aboard his submerged boat.
Overall tallies of those killed by the Category 3 storm vary, but we have seen none that put the total above 10, which is remarkable when you look at the photos. Some aerial images we’ve seen of barrios look as though they have endured a nuclear explosion.
As Southern Baja communities struggle to return to some measure of normalcy, a variety of relief organizations are providing aid. We have no way to assess which of these are the most worthwhile, of course, but we trust the advice of several longtime Baja residents who recommend the following:
Commodore of Club Cruceros Shelly Ward (of La Paz Yachts) set up this special site to aid La Paz cruisers whose boats were lost or damaged. "I can guarantee you the funds will be put in our emergency fund and used to help people in need," says Shelly.
If you planning to sail south this fall or winter and want to aid the recovery effort, we recommend that you wait until the dust has settled and see what items and services will still be needed by the time you arrive.