Foto de una roca semienterrada en la costa de Cofete


In order to follow a chronological order, first of all, we must highlight the great work carried out by the three leading characters of this webpage: Mr. Guillermo Schrauth, Mr. Arturo Kamphoff and Mr. Juan Concepción Villalba. The letters exchanged between the former two and my father, clearly portray their significance, also showing the talent displayed by Maestro Villalba, the main person in charge of the construction of the house, and whose outstanding job and expertise allowed him to be able to handle any difficulties posed by the distances and materials that were then scarce.

A section of this page is dedicated to the memory of the work carried out during the first years by Mr. Salvador Falero and the first “German people”: Mr. Alberto and Mr. Juan Langenbacher, Mr. Ricardo Häbich, Mr. Ramón Zadow, Mr. Theodor Günther and Mr. Rudolf Kalab. Some of them currently have living relatives who can receive this well-deserved mention.

This tribute to our dear parents, consists precisely of showing our appreciation to the many people who played an important role for our family. Especially during those first years after our parents arrived to Jandía, toward the end of the 1940’s, and the difficult 1950’s and beginning of the 1960’s. Most of them are long gone, and will not be able to receive this, but nevertheless, they deserve to be remembered. Some of them worked and got paid for their jobs, however, they always went the extra mile with their support and eagerness, and it was thanks to them that our parents did not give up and left and stayed in Jandía instead. They could have returned to the Mainland, and our father, as he had done in the past, could have worked there as an engineer after the war, or in Switzerland or Germany. Then, we, his children, wouldn’t have had the chance to enjoy our childhood and youth on these wonderful islands. Thanks to all of them. Despite having so many of them unfairly escaped our memory, unfortunately, but others do remain and we want them to be remembered:

Juana Díaz and Pancho López were very significant at the very beginning, alongside Juan Viera Cubas, a witness of their marriage in Gran Canaria in 1951; to Juana Hierro and Patricio Francés; Gregorio Soto. Also, to many of the medianeros, some of them closer to us like Tomás Pérez and Silvestre Francés and their extended families.

Our parents were very fortunate to have the visits of Mr. Eulogio Espinel, who incredibly managed to “discover” underground water wherever there was any to be found. Also, we would like to thank all of those who later worked opening wells –like his children Miguel and Roque-, building canals, ponds and water tanks. Without the water, Jandía wouldn’t have been the same.

We would also like to thank all the men and women who worked on the paths and roads, so very necessary for Jandía to develop and used to come and go, often very early in the morning. Doctors José Peña and Juan Guerrero, from Puerto Rosario the first, and years later from Gran Tarajal the second, to help people who were sick or injured in Jandía and who deserved our appreciation. To all those female and male teachers who did such fabulous work in the 1950’s and 1960’s: Mrs. Angelina Amado, Mrs. Juana Martel, Mrs. Flora Felipe, Mrs. Delia Bolaños and her husband Mr. Juan Vega, Mrs. Ana María and Mr. Luis Delgado, among others. Some of them were our first teachers.

The cooks of the Children’s Canteen, I’m sure they are dearly remembered by many men and women from Morro Jable. They cooked for many generations with love and affection. Some of them are, Lalita López, Catalina Rodríguez, Soledad Francés and Antoñita Ramos. As we mentioned before, we have also forgotten some of their names, but they deserve our tribute.

We affectionately remember the many women who looked after us, and we would like to thank them for the affection displayed: Mª Antonia, Petra, María Rodriguez, Elena, Mercedes, Juana and Soledad Francés, Consuelo Alonso, Maruca and Catalina Pérez. And last, but definitely not least thanks to Guadalupe Viera and her son Juan Rodriguez. Luckily, most of them are still among us and will be able to receive our sign of appreciation.

We have a special spot in our hearts for our dear “adoptive parents”, María Montañez and Agustín Marrero, who lived in the family home in Morro Jable for 24 years.

We have been extremely fortunate to have been close to Lorenzo Cabrera, who keeps on sharing his good memory and priceless stories with us.

Our appreciation to the generous work carried out by Mr. Alfredo Méndez, relentless, going around from one place to another on his motorbike. We were lucky to have had him as a neighbour and having enjoyed the friendship of his children, playing with them, going on field trips together and fishing.

To all those priests who practised their priesthood in Jandía during the 1950’s and the 1960’s, with a special mention to Mr. Leonilo Molina, Mr. Diego Ortiz and Mr. Ignacio Pérez.

We would also like to show our appreciation to a series of people who live in Gran Canaria, and who were key for our family, although they won’t receive our words of appreciation: brothers Andrés and Manuel Sánchez Pérez, efficient and generous; Vicente Martínez and David J. Nieves, author of wonderful movies and photographs of Jandía that were used to promote tourism. We remember our parents’ friends on this island with affection, many of them are our godparents: the Suárez-Cordóns, the Naranjo-Cordóns, the Pescadors – Hidalgos and, above all, Pino Hidalgo and Juan Nogales. And Mr. Francisco Rodríguez Cantón, their main legal advisor.

Furthermore, we have been extraordinarily fortunate to have had, and keep on having the affection and friendship of Toñi de Frutos and Guillermo Ferrer, our dear teacher, who put up with five teenagers and who gave us true life lessons.

To our nephew Carlos: without his priceless intervention, this project would have never seen the light.

And to our beloved parents.

Rafael, Gabriel, Juan Carlos and Gustavo Winter Althaus

I have a special spot for Mr. Andrés Santana (“Siete esquinas”) who shared his experiences and memories with me regarding the first half of the 20th Century in Jandía; with Mr. Juan Viera (“El truco”) who told me about life in Cofete, and Pepe Concepción, who told me everything about his arrival to Cofete in 1950, to work with his father building the house and the road, and who shared so many of his memories with me. Thanks to all of them, although they are no longer here to hear this.

I would like to show my appreciation to those who can still hear it: María Rodriguez Roger, Faustina Acosta, Flora Hierro, Renata Langenbacher, Bárbara Díaz and Claudio Reyero, and Juana Francés and Roque Espinel: all of them gave me a warm welcome and shared their stories about life in Jandía and in Cofete. I would also like to thank Marcial Arocha, who has provided me with his vast knowledge about the history of Jandía.

To José Luis Abaroa and Alexander Peer, for their thorough research work, and whom we have much to thank for the content of our father’s biography.

Finally, I would like to express my deepest gratitude to the people who have contributed to the making and edition of this webpage: Nemesys 2.0 and tinkers, who have done a magnificent design and content integration job; to Dácil and Fermín, English and German translators, respectively, who patiently put up with all the changes I have been making to texts that had until then seemed already finished versions, and to Carmen, Juan and Jesús, who have proofread the texts and provided me with priceless suggestions.

And to Esther, for an endless number of reasons.

Gustavo Winter Althaus
February, 2022