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Why become a member of the 24 Hour Association

By Natalie Hardy

Why indeed join this association, which sees to your final wishes when you pass away on foreign soil? The 24 Hour Association has been around San Miguel for a long time. In fact, it began about 50 years ago, and has proven its muster ever since. The association has both loyal officers and convinced members. It is useful and telling to quote some of these individuals who volunteer via the Civil List, word of mouth, and direct experience.

A query I picked up on the Civil List some time back says: “Does anyone have information about the 24 Hour Club? I have been told it would be a good idea to register with the service. I don’t like being pushed into things but surely it is smart to be prepared. We never know which day is our last. Wings are not just for the birds, as we used to say in South Florida.”

The answer came immediately: “I cannot begin to tell you how invaluable the aid of the 24 Hour Association was to me when my mother passed away here in San Miguel. There simply are not words for my gratitude. I didn’t have to do a thing in a situation that could have been logistically daunting, time-critical, and emotionally painful. It is well worth not only the cost (which is incredibly low compared to similar arrangements in the US), but the somewhat annoying task of getting all of the necessary documentation together. After my mother passed, I made it a number one priority to get the information and funds together to enroll both myself and my husband in the program ASAP. I would put this priority even over that of having a Mexican will—though both are necessary. I strongly urge you and anyone reading this post to not put this off another day. do it now!” D. H.

Another current experience involves a member of 24 Hours who also gave a lot of care to two elderly English and Australian ladies. Each lived well into their 90s, and had resided in San Miguel for decades. Maggi Hutchins vouches for elderly people here who outlive their peers, and end up quite alone without family and depending entirely on the goodness of friends. She writes: “As a member of the 24 Hour Association myself, I would like to relate my experiences with two beloved friends who lived here in San Miguel. In both cases their families were in faraway places, England and Australia, and they were unable to travel to San Miguel.”

Maggi continues: “Katherine Walch was just short of 100 years old when she died three years ago and Rosamond Campbell died recently at age 94. As long time members of the 24 Hour, their passing was dealt with great promptness, efficiency and sensitivity. They both had left written instructions as to their wishes of services upon their deaths. These were followed by loving friends and both were lovely celebrations of lives well spent.”

“In my own case as not having family, I am relieved by the knowledge that upon my own passing, the concerns and worries of my friends will not be taxed…except of course, for a grand send-off with flowers, balloons, kites and bubbles, and of course, a few British and Mexican songs! Even perhaps a few doves to assist my spirit to another realm.”

And so it is wise to consider freeing yourself of decisions that must be made at some point, or under the worst of circumstances, of decisions forcibly made by others. The 24 Hour Association exists for your benefit and aid, to deal with what many do not want to contend. Be kind to your family, yourself and your friends. Simply become a member of 24 Hour and leave the rest to the Association. For more information, contact the Executive Secretary, Linda Cooper, at: or check the web site at: or call Linda at185-2023.

This article is by Natalie Chilton Hardy, 10-year Board Member and Public Relations Director for the 24 Hour Association. She came on the Board after the fine experience with 24 Hours upon the death of her husband, Derrick Hardy in 2004.


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