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Volunteer Medical and Dental Missions to Mexico

April 2005


Three planes left on Thursday for San Juanico/Cadeje carrying equipment to set up a solar powered satellite internet system… more on this later. Thursday’s group had headwinds down the Baja peninsula. Friday’s group of four planes had great tailwinds. Everyone had headwinds on the return but the weather was clear.


Dr. MacFarland and Denise Kirchner, PA, were dropped off on the Cadeje side Friday by Ted Kenney and were hard at work Saturday morning when the first plane arrived from Mulege. Thanks again to Ted and Margo! With the additional help of RN Myra Cochran, all the patients were seen in a timely manner. Several families made four hour trips over dirt roads to be seen.


Dr. Dick Klein performed his usual magic, transforming the smiles of people missing teeth, with his denture work. Donna Hillman, dental hygienist, was very popular cleaning teeth. Don Zellet once again kept everyone busy with his triage. Extractions and fillings were done by the Grube-Willis team with fill in by Dr. MacFarland on one extraction at the end of the day. Peter Lewis was trained on the use of the autoclave and all did a great job.


Dr. Gerry Groff and assistant Aurelia Wallace examined 49 patients and dispensed glasses as needed. Using a portable automatic refractor and hundreds of pre-made glasses of various known prescriptions, Dr Groff was able to dispense all but a few pairs of glasses. The remainder will be custom made here and sent down on the May trip… a tremendous service to these people. Thanks Team!


Under the supervision of Dave Bothman, four UCSB students and Fabian Lopez, a satellite internet contractor, worked all three days to connect the village and the secondary school to the internet. There will be a separate mailing and fundraising solicitation on this very exciting work. This dedicated and talented team worked until dark on Saturday and a few hours on Sunday to complete the job. The smile on the face of Angélica, the secondary school teacher, was a great reward. More will be needed for the elementary school and the engineers have a follow up plan. Thanks to Brian Coryat and others who have contributed generously to this project.


Pilots: Larry Cochran, Brian Coryat, Don Bates, Frank Heintz, John Grube, Ted Kenney, Peter Lewis Dentists: John Grube, Dick Klein MD: Eric MacFarland PA: Denise Kirchner FNP: Myra Cochran

RN: Bobbi Bliss RMA/Clinic Coordinator: Lola Rosales RDH: Donna Hillman Dental Assistants: Melodi Willis, Peter Lewis Pharmacy: Margo Kenney Water Boy: David Coryat Translators: Don Zellet, Susan Grube, Leanne Elliot, Brian Coryat, Chari Coryat ENGINEERS: Dave Bothman, Don Bates, Francisco Regaldo, Tobin Greenburg, Carl Neufeld, Fabian Lopez


Trip date: May 13, 2005

Pre-trip potluck: Wednesday, May 4, 2005

The pre-trip potluck meeting will be held at The Derricks’. Click here for time and location.

Volunteers for May call Lola at 563-2440. Pilots, call Lisa at 682-1472.

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