A Member Tribute: Herbert Goebels

Herb Goebels at home with Don Parrish.

By Don Parrish

Don Parrish resides in Downers Grove, Illinois. In addition to being a member since 2000, he is regarded as one of the world’ s most widely traveled persons, having completed the TCC list. Visit his Web site: https://donparrish.com/TCCAward.html.

Don Parrish examining Herb’s global coin collection.

This past June, while on a trip to Germany, past TCC guide and founding coordinator of the German chapter, Herbert Goebels and his wife, Young Sook, hosted me for dinner on their terrace in Aachen. Prior to dinner, Herb showed me his outstanding coin collection from virtually every country — some countries had multiple coin sets due to replacement of that country’s currency. Wow! As sturdy as a metal box, this glass box weighs 95 kilograms (210 pounds).

In 2001, I met Herb and past chairman Klaus Billep on my first trip with the TCC to Cuba. This trip was special as it was one of the first trips to the country in the 21st century for American travelers. Klaus was there for meetings, but Herb was our 11-day expedition leader. As a guide, Herb was known for his theatrical touches, and while in Baracoa, Cuba, where Columbus made his second landing on his first voyage, Herb quoted from Columbus’ logs: “una montaña, alta y cuadrada.” We could see the high flat mountain Herb was speaking about — confirming history in front of our eyes.

When Libya opened up to American travelers in 2004 after 28 years, Herb was among the first to plan a TCC trip and he also led the first TCC trip to Iraq in 2006. I was fortunate to join these tours and several other trips to Western Africa, Central Asia and East Africa in 2007 and 2008.

Herb was a popular and beloved guide for many long-standing TCC members. He was a master of logistics so his trips ran smoothly. Herb explained the key to harmony in tour groups was avoiding fights over the first-row seats on the bus. He determined who sat there every day.

Thanks Herb for your contributions to the TCC and travel. You deserve our recognition.

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