Meeting With The U.S. Ambassador To Panama at Hotel Ciudad de David

U.S. Ambassador Farrar on the left and Don Ray Williams on the right

Yesterday, the largest turnout I have seen, for one of the U.S. Embassy meetings with American Citizens in Chiriquí, took place in Hotel Ciudad de David. A similar meeting with other U.S. citizens took place in the Boquete library on the Monday.

I was privileged to act as moderator for the David session, where Ambassador Farrar responded to a variety of questions including the upcoming Free Trade Agreement, Medicare, voter registration, and others.

One of the items that came up was the importance of U.S. Citizens registering with the U.S. Embassy when they come to Panama. A representative of the David morgue spoke about the problems that they have when U.S. Citizens die in Chiriqui without proper documents specifying what should be done.

Having been involved in several of these cases, I know that the U.S. Embassy has had to spend months on some cases tracking down the next of kin. The local morgue has a limited number of refrigerated units to take care of preserving the bodies. Help everyone out by registering with the Embassy. If you do nothing else, fill out the area in your passport for “Personal Data and Emergency Contacts”.

A member of VFW also spoke about the possibility of forming a local VFW group in Chiriquí. He said that a minimum of 25 members would be required. Based on a show of hands in the David meeting, I would say the group is well on its way to being a possibility.

I would personally like to thank Ambassador Farrar for taking the time to visit Chiriquí. I would also like to thank everyone that attended the meeting in Boquete and in David. There were far more in the meeting than had previously sent in a RSVP.

Yesterday’s meeting was solely to introduce the new Ambassador and provide an opportunity to get his viewpoint on questions that expats have. Another meeting will be held in September that will be more of a working session with representatives of the American Citizen Services area of the U.S. Embassy in Panama City.

When I have the specifics on those meeting, I will publish them.

Flicker photos take by the U.S. Embassy during the meeting may be seen in at the following locations.

UPDATE: I was requested to provide the URL for registering with the U.S. Embassy. Here is the link to follow.

It will provide you information and then you should follow its included link to the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program home page.

6 thoughts on “Meeting With The U.S. Ambassador To Panama at Hotel Ciudad de David

  1. Hi Joseph, I will try to get a copy of some of the documents that were handed out and scan them and post them. In the meantime, is others that were there could help with the Q&As, I would appreciate it.

    I am going to have limited time to respond for a couple of days, but will try to fill in the gaps when I free up.

  2. Don: thanks for posting info on the meeting. I think he will make a good Ambassador as he certainly seems to be a people person. Thanks for all the pictures.

  3. Free Trade Act…To the best of memory, the Ambassador said the U.S. had completed that end of it and Panama had not, but is expected to soon. A caveat to this and most F.T.A. with other countries is, the item must be manufactured in the signatory country. (ie) If you buy something at Walmart and send it down here, chances are it will not be covered by the agreement, IF it was made in China.

    Another thing that was brought up was cremation and the closing of the crematorium in David, the person in charge of the morgue in David said the cemetery in San Pablo Arriba was in the PLANING PROCESS of getting one..

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