By Carola Rico
Last year was complicated and with enormous human losses, among them people who marked the history of San Miguel de Allende in some way and were well-known locally.
We dedicate this space to the memory of all those who have passed and note some who have left a notable mark on our San Miguel community.
Don Santiago Gallardo Muñiz: Founder of the only local shoe manufacturing store and most recognized shoe retail store, San Miguel Shoes. He died on January 7, 2021, due to complications from Covid. A few weeks later, on the 26 of the same month, his wife, Martha López de Gallardo, also lost the battle. She, together with her husband, ran this unique shoe factory and store. It achieved high sales and employed dozens of Sanmiguelenses in the factory.
Francisco Javier Zavala Ortiz: Native of San Miguel, he died on February 7, 2021, of Covid. He
was the well-known presenter and owner of XESQ Radio San Miguel. After the death of his father, the
illustrious José Manuel Zavala Zavala (PPKBZON) in 2006, Francisco took over and remained at the fore-
front of the local radio station.
Ernesto Herrera Godínez: He died on February 12, 2021, of complications from Covid. Originally from Leon, he lived in San Miguel de Allende. Godínez was the creator and founder of the Guanajuato International Film Festival (GIFF).
Ignacio Reyes Retana: He was 92 years old and died on February 16. Litigation lawyer and founder of the San Miguel de Allende Bar Association, he had a long career in his profession. For almost 70 years he provided services as a representative and defender of human rights.
Susana Luna Rodríguez: Renowned athlete and teacher from San Miguel, she died in an accident on September 30, 2021, amid the heavy rains that fell in that period.
Father Beta: The priest Juan Manuel Betancourt died on September 12, 2021, in San Miguel de Allende of Covid. He was much beloved by his parishioners and had served as a priest for nine years in San Luis de la Paz. He had been transferred to a parish in San Miguel de Allende on August 20, 2021.
Paolo Bizzoto: He died on November 2021 of a heart attack. Of Italian origin, he was a long-time resident of San Miguel de Allende. Celebrated restaurant entrepreneur and owner of the restaurant La Bella Italia, he was president of the San Miguel branch of Canirac. Among the events he facilitated was the successful Lamb and Mezcal Festival.
Colin Harter: Originally from the United States, he died on November 28, 2021, of Covid. He was characterized by his unique sense of humor, which he expressed with his VW vehicle, nicknamed “bocho.” The car, adorned with stuffed animals that he changed according to the season, cruised the city’s streets. He said that he had unique reasons for doing this.