Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Calama final, San Antonio 45 years, and Family Home Evening

I am posting the final pictures from Calama trip.  We spent an evening with a wonderful young couple.  He is Chilean and she is from the Dominican Republic.  Pablo and Greicie.  We stayed at a the Sonesta Hotel which was very nice.  I also visited with Aniceto Perez who I baptized in 1970 in the River Loa. We returned there to see what it was like.  Pretty much the same just alot of commerce had grown up around it.

Joe and Dixie Bowler Van and Millie Layman and Greicy

Aniceto and me at the Rio Loa

Aniceto Perez and me at the Rio Loa where he was baptized

This is where we met for church in 1970 on La Torre street

Me at 1333 La Torre in Calama where we held church in 1970

Monument to the copper industry

Sonesta Hotel eating area

End of a long trip with our favorite taxi driver Ariel
The stake in San Antonio celebrated 45 years of the church there.  I arrived about 16 months after the branch had been opened.  I was asked to speak on Friday night and Gary Davis and Charles Acevedo spoke on Sunday night.  It was wonderful to see people I knew then and some I have gotten to know with previous visits to Chile. 

Leonardo Jr and Daniel playing. 

Leonardo Sr and daughter

Now playing the guitars

Rene Briceno and his wife.  I have know him since 1970

Ricardo Acevedo and Gary Davis with 45 year plaque

Leonardo Wilches Sr and Jr and Daniel and Me

Leonardo and his wife and daughter

Their backdrop to the stage
It seems it has been hard to get on this blog and write.  It could be that Millie and I are finding our time to be increasingly decreased!!!  What I mean is that we are really tired working the evening shift.  We go in at 2:30 or 3:30 and leave at anywhere from 10:30pm to 11:00pm.  And we are not getting to sleep until the wee hours of the morning.  So it has been a real difference from working in the mornings.  We go back to the mornings in October and November which we will like alot better.

The 18 of September is coming up and the temple will be closed for 2 days for their Independence day.  The Bowlers and the Roberts and us are going to Mendoza, Argentina via bus.  You go thru the Andes Mt's on a pass with many switchbacks.  We are riding on a double decker bus and we are sitting in the front seats up on top.  Millie wanted a first hand view.  Yes kids we have permission from the temple president to go.  Mendoza is in our temple district.  Nellie and Paul took this same trip when they were in Chile a couple of years ago.

Good bye for now.  Count your many blessings, name them one by one.  You have so many I hope we all are counting each day.

Van and Millie


  1. Oh Mom is going to love the bus ride to Mendoza in those front seats. I particularly was fascinated by the ski lifts going over road.

  2. Hi, this is Mark Vos, a church member from Rancho Cucamonga, California. I found this website by searching for Leonardo Wilches, a companion of mine early in my mission to Paraguay. I see from your photos of him he hasn't changed much. He was my first "greenie," and he had only been a church member for 2 or 3 years when he went on his mission. But I learned so much more from him than he did from me. We were companions in early 1985 I believe. We had a great time serving together. How can I contact him? Mark Vos,