We are saddened at the passing of Bob Frey, a TecNica volunteer and long time supporter, on Tuesday, October 18, 2011 in Ensenada, Mexico.
Bob had been fighting for the same causes all his life: peace and justice, environmental protection, a sustainable lifestyle, making the best of our interaction with the planet.
Bob was a systems analyst, originally from Oakland; he was retired when he passed away. Bob is survived by a son, Ethan, living in Berlin and a daughter, Alicia, living in the United States.
Bob was active in Latin America solidarity movements since at least the 1980s. He was a volunteer with TecNica, worked with the AtWork project of Earth Island Institute, and was active in movements related to Oaxaca and Mexican/US border issues. The latter led him to settle in the port city of Ensenada down the coast from Tijuana. After living part-time in Ensenada for several years, Bob achieved his long-awaited retirement from EBMUD. He sold his house in Oakland and was enjoying life full time in Mexico.
Acting locally with Mexican comrades, he co-founded and led the organizations Transición Ensenada (an initiative that seeks to rebuild community resilience and reduce carbon dioxide emissions, i.e., sustainable development) and Grupo Pro Ciclovia (promoting bicycling).
“He was very generous and very integrated with the Mexican community,” said Marcela Danemann, a journalist living in Ensenada.
Bob was found in his apartment in Ensenada, apparently having died the day before. Two young Mexican people are accused of his murder.
You can read about his continuing activism for “Transicion Ensenada” and “Ciclovia” in the articles cited below. Transicion Ensenada is part of the worldwide Transition Network.
Those who knew Bob Frey describe him as a gregarious man with wide-ranging interests. “He was an ecologist, a humanist and loved Mexican culture,” said Carolina Sotelo, who would often see him at Café Café, a favorite coffee shop. He was a gentle person.
Frey loved music, people, dogs, trees—“you could find compatibility with him on just about any subject,” said Adriana Figueroa, who worked alongside Bob at Transición Ensenada.
Bob was indeed generous with his time and dedicated to his community. A staff member of the Museo de Historia de Ensenada said this of Bob, “Robert Frey fue socio fundador de varios movimientos: Grupo Pro Ciclo Va!! y Transición Ensenada, también participaba en Mercado Verde, Culture Beat, Kamambe Percusiones, Salvemos a Tara la Salvadora, Haciendo lo Necesario, A.C. entre otros grupos y movimientos. Por todo esto es recordado y querido!! Preferimos recordarlo por cómo vivió, no por cómo murió!!”
Bob was remembered in a very moving memorial in Berkeley at La Peña Cultural Center on October 30, 2011. Family and friends from his former workplace, TecNica, CISPES, and many other solidarity organizations remembered him fondly and spoke of his many contributions to make the world a better place. His friends recalled his unbounding energy doing the work he loved, his generosity in opening his home to others, and love he projected as a great father and friend to many.
Close to 300 people who skated, rode bicycles and marched through the city, carrying flowers and candles in his memory, held a memorial service for Bob in Ensenada.
Anyone wishing to honor Bob’s memory with a charitable donation may make it to Transición Ensenada. When we have a concrete place to send contributions, we will post it.
Here are the links to the stories in a San Diego newspaper and a Mexican newspaper about the incident.
En paz descanse…