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Jocelyn Warthold

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Dual language Winter Texan an asset in resort meetings and groups

By: Rocio Villalobos

Not even her 72nd birthday, which fell on a Saturday, could keep Jocelyn Warthold from fulfilling her duties as the secretary for Pleasant Valley Resort’s first responder group. The first meeting of the season was scheduled for the upcoming Monday, so she spent her morning writing and preparing documents.

“I write up the schedule. I will make a list of the members, how many teams we have, things like that,” she said. “I will then take minutes and send them to all our members. So it’s quite the something. I’ve been working on it all morning.”

But the work didn’t end there. Pleasant Valley is a park in which the majority of the visitors come from Canada and Warthold estimates 75% of their population speaks French, which means she writes up two sets of everything — one in English, one in French.

“I send it in English to those who want in English and I send it in French to those who want in French,” she said. “Every time I do that. That’s my work and I’m happy to be able to help.”

Warthold got involved with the first responders group when it was established in the park seven years ago after being approached by the activity director to join.

“It’s like our baby. We (Warthold and her husband) enjoy taking care of our people,” said Warthold, adding that last season the group responded to 22 calls. “And it’s very appreciated by everybody in the park.”

Additionally, she volunteers her time to assist Pleasant Valley in announcing activities, programs and special events to residents at their weekly meetings — first in English, then in French — and will go down to the main office any time a staff member needs help communicating with a resident.

“This year we have many new people who speak little English, so the office calls me and will ask, ‘please come and help us,’” Warthold said. “So I go and I help them. Why not!”
She and her husband live in Saint-Zotique, a municipality in Quebec, Canada in which mostly French is spoken. However Warthold learned English at a young age because her parents stressed the importance of the language, which they said makes it easier to communicate with other parts of the world.

The Wartholds have been making the three-and-a-half day drive down to Mission for the last 19 years and she said she loves the Valley and the resort because of the friendliness in the community and abundance of activities to partake in.

“We are very happy to be around here in the winter and wherever we go, we always feel so welcomed,” she said. “And with all the activities in the park you’re not just sitting around. So we get to do all kinds of things.”

She added that over the years they’ve familiarized themselves with a local H-E-B and that when they go by the store toward the end of the winter Texan season, employees greet them and ask, “Are you coming back next season?” to which the answer is always a “yes.”

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