Carlos and Edwin Garcia Martin

February 19, 2008

On February 15, Carlos, the manager of Finca Vista Hermosa, and his son Edwin, were on their way back up to the Finca with supplies and money for payroll. On the way up the mountain, some bandits not from the area took their money and their lives as well. This was shock not only to the FVH Family, but also to the local community. If you wish to read more follow this post to the bottom.


Carlos 1960 – 2008. Husband and father of 12 kids.

Carlos up close

Edwin 1991 – 2008. While not the oldest he was the first in his family to go to high school. Ever since he could kick a ball he fearlessly played with people twice his age and is a legendary goalie.edwin-and-siblings.jpg

This year Carlos would have been 47 and Edwin 17.

Carlos wife Juana will be 42 yrs old in 2008

Remaining kids and ages in 2008:

Diego 27

Ana 25

Eluvia 20

Elena 18

Reina 14

Mariela 12

Ronaldo 10

Ashley 8

Dianet 6

Carina 4

Israel 3


It’s been 10 days and Nina and I are still in disbelief.  I apologize I have not taken or returned some of your calls. Email has proven to be a good emotional filter.

For years now there isn’t a week that goes by with out someone asking “How’s Carlos doing?”. The first thought that comes to my mind now is “It’s none of your business!” But, it probably is. And while it’s the last thing anyone wants to talk about in a time like this, the question remains: How will this impact FVH?

Carlos was a good mentor and delegator. It was just 1 month ago I was hiking the boundaries of a couple micro lots and I told Carlos “I don’t know what we would ever do with out you!” To see things at FVH continuing to move forward brings tears to my eyes as I see the impact this man has had. Particularly in his absence. Many managers are limited in what they achieve because they are afraid to let go of their managerial duties. Carlos was good at teaching, letting go and allowing people to make mistakes knowing that he too had made his fair share. With early morning jobs beginning at 5:00 a.m. and depulping sometimes running until 2:00 a.m. delegating was not an option. Carlos knew if he made himself obsolete by training others to do his job that it would be good for everyone. While some hold the reigns tight in the interest of job security Carlos proved to move far beyond what his job called for. He was a forward thinking innovator that was aggressive in getting things done but also a tender and sensitive listener that was eager to hear others opinions.

He committed his time to developing new projects that always somehow improved the quality of the coffee, quality of life or quality of the environment. Some of the things Carlos supervised the last 12 months include the construction of new restrooms, new sleeping quarters and laundry mat for seasonal workers. He also discovered a new small spring and protected it while building a multiple tank reservoir system which provides good pressure with out a pump while also filtering and providing clean water. And of course he always took joy in remodeling the wetmill area. This was where all the fine tuning and experimenting took place. Carlos built a few new roads and diplomatically maintained good relations while settling multiple property line disputes with honesty and integrity. The list goes on, but most importantly he was a loving husband and father that will be greatly missed.

I want to express my gratitude to not only our customers but so many in the coffee community who have expressed their condolences and to you who are currently doing something about this. If you wish to put a DONATE BUTTON on your website or blog please email me and I will gladly forward the picture file as well as the link. It is very easy to do.

Sometimes there are difficult questions in this life that we cannot possibly understand the answers to. Carlos was quite possibly one of the happiest finca managers in the world. When he went back to his home town to visit he was treated like royalty because people knew that he had a good job where he did a great job and intern he was paid well for it. Few things brought him more joy to know the level of appreciation people had for the fruit of his labor. His grin was ear to ear when told about where FVH coffee ended up and that people asked for it by name and even asked and cared about him.

I will soon be visiting with the rest of his family to try to begin expressing some of the warmth that has been expressed to me. However much we are able to gather up in the coming months this will never make up for what was lost. And however little it may be we trust that it will be multiplied and meet their every need.

Despite so many things that are uncertain in this world, we are confident that we will see Carlos and Edwin again one day and that they are much happier today than ever before.


32 Responses to “Carlos and Edwin Garcia Martin”

  1. I am so sorry for the loss. Our prayers are with their family.

  2. Jason Haeger Says:

    I never met either of them, but I can’t help but feel connected. I’ve been gushing about love in the industry lately, and this just broke my heart.

    If there’s anything I can do, I’m in.

  3. […] goes out the Martin family, the Martinez family, and everyone effected by this tragedy. I thank Edwin, Aaron, and M’Lissa for expressing my feelings and sentiments better than I […]

  4. Tim Taylor, Senior Says:

    I am so sorry for your loss and the pain you are feeling right now. We are praying for the Martin family and everyone there at the finca. It is so hard to find the right words…but Paul said to comfort one another with these words, so I leave them with you asking the Lord to make them as precious to you as they have been to me:

    11Thessalonians 4:13-18
    13But we do not want you to be uninformed, brethren, about those who are asleep, so that you will not grieve as do the rest who have no hope. 14For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so God will bring with Him those who have fallen asleep in Jesus. 15For this we say to you by the word of the Lord, that we who are alive and remain until the coming of the Lord, will not precede those who have fallen asleep. 16For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. 17Then we who are alive and remain will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we shall always be with the Lord. 18Therefore comfort one another with these words.

  5. gabe Says:

    I am so so sorry. My deepest condolences.

  6. Emily Says:

    So sorry to hear of your lost, our thoughts go to all at FVH and their family and yours.

  7. Edwin,

    Lo lamento muchisimo, mis condolencias a las familias.

  8. Klaus Says:

    Our thoughts and prayers are with Carlos’ and Edwins family and friends.

  9. Steve Roe Says:

    In these moments life displays itself in thinness. The question has been posed, Where is God in these times? God is in those offering themselves to the family in care and presence.

    “The friend who can be silent with us in a moment of despair or confusion, who can stay with us in an hour of grief and bereavement, who can tolerate not knowing… not healing, not curing… that is a friend who cares.”

    Henri Nouwen

  10. Tim Taylor Says:

    [I lift my cup]… “to Carlos and Edwin Garcia Martin… who LIVE even though they die.”

  11. Thank you Carlos and Edwin for all you are in the world,yesterday and today. You have touched and united many, in ways we all aspire to.

  12. I heard this morning. My most heartfelt condolences to you and yours. I’ll hold memories of Carlos extra fondly in my heart for the coming times.

  13. […] sad. Senseless. Awful. I don’t know enough to write what happened, but you can read more at Finca Vista Hermosa’s blog. Edwin Martinez has set up a fund to help Juana and her children. Or you can purchase a pound of FVH […]

  14. […] children.  You can read more about the situation as well as make a donation to his family here . Kendrick’s coffee is 100% Finca Vista Hermosa beans.  Every drop of that wonderful coffee […]

  15. indysun Says:

    We love you, Juana and children. We’ll do anything we can to help you. Especially pray.

  16. Lyle Says:

    God bless Juana and all of the children. Our thoughts and prayers go out to you.

    Rest in Peace Carlos and Edwin.

  17. Terry Z Says:

    Edwin, Our thoughts are with you and the FVH family.

  18. Barefoot Kate Says:

    our hearts are with you.

  19. […] good friends at Finca Vista Hermosa in Guatemala suffered a cruel shock recently. As the farm’s manager, Carlos, and his son, Edwin, returned to the finca with the […]

  20. theredrevolution Says:

    I dont know any of you, but I read this info from Lauren Taylor’s blog. This breaks my heart. Stories like this make me long for the return of Christ. My prayers are with the family. Thank you so much for giving us the opportunity to give financially to this family.

  21. MikeFTrevino Says:

    Edwin, Please send our well wishes to Carlos’ family and the rest of the workers families. We are very sorry for your loss. A person that sounds as irreplaceable as Carlos is hard to find. Friends that work well and workers that become good friends are rare. This loss is felt here.

  22. […] The staff is managed, in the family’s absence, by a very smart, warm and genuine man named Carlos Garcia Martin. Carlos is the one responsible for the coffee from seed to harvest and the quality of his work is […]

  23. PTs Coffee Says:

    Our thoughts and prayers with Juana and their children. Carlos and Edwin will be missed greatly! Your loss is felt all the way to Topeka Kansas USA.

  24. Molly Greenleaf Says:

    I was so sorry to hear of the loss – the pictures you have posted show a glimpse into their life. It looks like they are a wonderful family – and even though I haven’t met them – it feels like I have b/c of so many people I know who have been gifted to spend some time with them. God Bless you and their family during this time.

  25. Christie Says:

    Edwin…I’m praying for you this week as you head towards Huehue. My prayers and those of many here in the Big D go with you. I often still find myself in shock of the news and reality therin, but am thankful to see how the world wide coffee community and the body of Christ are coming together to do what they are able to support Juana y la familia. Love you guys.

  26. Mandy and Robin Fritchman Says:

    As parents of Stewart Fritchman (Bellatazza Coffee) we share the pain of your loss. Sorry our check sent to Edwin cannot be more but without a doubt it speaks of our compassion.

    Mandy and Robin Fritchman

  27. Edwin Martinez Says:

    Thank you all for your most sincere condolences. Thanks to your support we have been able to effectively meet the needs of Juana and her 11 kids for the time being. Diego the oldest has carried on managing the tail end of harvest as our drying patios have been full up until this week. Through many tears and moments of silence we know what is lost can never be replaced. We are moving forward and trusting God will continue to provide as he always has. In addition to continuing to pay Juana, Carlos’ salary, more importantly we want to carefully work to provide way for Juana and her family to do something that is meaningful and rewarding, not just financially. We want to avoid managing charity funds and wisely invest into their future in a way that each penny that is given can be multiplied and have a profound impact on not just Juana and her 11 kids, but their extended family and community for years to come – in memory of Carlos and Edwin Garcia Martin

  28. My heart aches for all of you even as I know that with the help of God you will grow stronger every day.

  29. Jim Cone Says:

    Edwin: I have just learned of your losses. I would like to put a donate button on our web site and a breif story provided by you. Please advise when we can buy more coffee. We will pray for all and light a cvandle. Jim

  30. Javaphile Says:


    I have just a few minutes ago heard of this terrible tragedy. It saddens me to no end to hear of this horrible loss. Such a terrible and senseless thing. I first spoke with you back in January of 2006 after you discovered my post about your wonderful coffee. It remains to this day my favorite bean.

    I had an espresso of FVH this week-end at the 2008 SCAA conference in Minneapolis and literally did not recognize it. I don’t know what they did to your wonderful coffee to make it hit the upper palette with such a salty note. Now I know. It was from all the tears being shed over this senseless tragedy.

    My deepest condolences to everyone there.

  31. […] to take place in about a month. But we know the importance of the work of the farm manager and from Edwin’s own blog we can tell they will be greatly […]

  32. […] excellent articles on and the FVH blog contain a link to donate via paypal.  Alternatively, we would be happy to forward any donations […]

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