OUR story

Our Foundation

The Live Like Ben Foundation, is a charitable foundation established by his loving family and friends worldwide, to honour the legacy of Ben Trompetter. In his many years as an adventure guide, Ben’s joy and passion touched the lives of thousands of people. The Foundation’s projects to date include the building of a school and a fresh water filtration system in a village in Northern Thailand. The upcoming project will bring hydro electric power to a nearby village.

Our Ambassadors

Niki and Alex are an integral part of our foundation, they both continue to dedicate their time in helping us not only bridge the gap of communication with the local people, but organizing and carrying out the projects. Also, Niki’s amazing photography/videography and writing has allowed us to share with you the beauty of the people and their surroundings.

The LiveLikeBen Foundations work in Thailand would not be possible without Niki and Alex’s love and dedication to the cause. They are true examples of what it means to ‘Live Like Ben’.

We love you, we thank you, Kaa

Our Team

Tara Trompetter

Tara Trompetter, a.k.a. Mama T, is the heart and soul of the Live Like Ben Foundation.  None of the accomplishments of LLB would have been possible without her boundless vision, drive, compassion, and above all – love.  Being around Tara, it’s not hard to see where Ben got the traits that made him an “unstoppable force” and earned him the nickname “The Rhino”.   Her ability to turn personal tragedy into positive action is truly an inspiration to all.

These days, Tara can be found living in Sooke, B.C. with her partner, Terry, a.k.a. Papa T and their golden retriever Beau, working on Decorative Art and Interior Design projects, Happy Rhino Publishing, her line of clothing imported from Thailand – ‘Thai Dragonfly’, and, of course, working tirelessly to facilitate the great work of the LiveLikeBen Foundation.

Tyler Trompetter
Mortgage Professional 

P: 604.367.9877
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Tyler Trompetter

Tyler is from White Rock, British Columbia, where he lives with his wife Kayleigh and daughter, just a stone’s throw away from the ocean. Much like his siblings Meghan and Ben Trompetter he grew up an adventurer and began his backpacking career at the tender age of 18. His travels saw him live, work, study, and explore across multiple continents. With a passion for surfing, backpacking adventures nowadays usually involve his surfboard in tow.  

Tyler holds his BBA majoring in Finance, his studies included completing his undergraduate degree in Spain at the Universidad Autonama de Barcelona. Tyler now enjoys a successful career in Real Estate & Finance.

 Tyler’s contributions to the LLB Foundation help him to feel connected to his older brother and he continues to live by the foundation motto “Live Like Ben”.

Meghan Trompetter & Antoni Spizzirri

These two beach bums met 11 years ago in ‘The Land of Smiles’ while Meghan was a guide for Beach Travellers and Antoni was on a trip in search of something new and fulfilling.  What started as a one month holiday, turned into multiple summers backpacking and tour guiding the beauty of SE Asia together.  Meg’s brother Ben’s constant quest for adventure, and playful outlook on life was and still is a reminder to them both.  Not to take life too seriously, but also challenge themselves as much as possible.  

Now nestled in the woods on Vancouver Island, in Sooke, B.C., Meghan, Antoni and their daughter continue their adventures with surfing, hiking with their pup, and exploring the island.

Antoni’s passion for woodworking and his background in metal fabrication has him focused on his custom wood and metalworking business.  Meghan has recently completed schooling in TCM and acupuncture.  Combining this with her background in nutrition and yoga, she practices as an Acupuncturist and strives to inspire and educate people to love and thrive optimally.

Their personal slogan “Adventure Forever” will continue to take them anywhere and everywhere with their dog, cats, and soon to be family along for the ride.

Terence Jack Hermiston

Terence Jack Hermiston co-founded Beach Travellers, a travel adventure company, out of Vancouver, Canada in 2003. He ran this company for 13-years, creating authentic local experiences for travellers across the globe to Thailand, Bali, Laos, Cambodia, Costa Rica and Brazil.

During his time in Southeast Asia, Terence visited a number of orphanages throughout Thailand and Cambodia and felt compelled to give back and provide support for children in need in this beautiful part of the world. A person who shared this passion with Terence was Ben Trompetter, Terence’s very close childhood friend and Beach Travellers’ Thailand Manager. Through his deep connections with Thailand, Ben and the Trompetter family; Terence feels honored and privileged to sit on the Board for Live Like Ben.

After more than a decade spent running Beach Travellers, Terence decided to follow another lifelong passion – music. Now going by, “Terence Jack,” Terence has released two studio albums and has toured North America a number of times. He now resides in Los Angeles, CA with his wife Lucy and dog, Loki.

David Jol

David learned the ropes of travel from Ben before he could even grow a moustache.  Ben treated him like a brother and taught him how to live like a local in Thailand, a lesson David would take with him all over the world until he finally grounded himself for a time to go to Law School in Victoria, B.C.  Being able to support the Foundation is a way that David can honour his old friend and mentor as well as utilize some of the skills he has learned in law school to do some real good in the world.

DJ Services

Travel Management

Mobile • 780 803 2120

Carter Buan

Carter fell in love with Thailand from the moment he set foot in the country, but little did he know it would be the first of many trips to the Kingdom, and many with Ben at his side. Ben inspired a fierce love for adventure and adrenaline in Carter after guiding him on a month-long backpacking trip that became a stepping stone to years of travel throughout Southeast Asia and beyond. The two became fast friends, brothers, and colleagues, with Ben mentoring Carter in all things Thai and sharing his infectious laugh and devilish sense of humour every step of the way. Carter is still involved in the travel industry today, and has shaped a career from experiences that would not have been possible without Ben’s positivity and inspiration. It is with pride that Carter is involved with the Live Like Ben Foundation to keep pushing that inspiration forward and continuing Ben’s legacy for years to come.

Adam Strynadka

My success in business, personal endeavours, and friendships can all be traced back to a very hasty decision in 2004 to purchase a backpack and hit the road.  A few years later, directly through this decision, I had the pleasure of meeting Ben.  I should correct that – no one really “meets Ben” it is more of an experience akin to watching the Kool-Aid guy run through a brick wall.  You’re laughing, confused, slightly terrified, and feeling more alive than you can remember.  His infectious spirit and genuine care for others has stayed with me to this day, positively influencing so many big and small things in my life.
The opportunity to be a part of something that will carry on the memory of Ben, and impact the lives of others is an absolute honour and important responsibility.  I hope that I can channel some of the things that made Ben such an exceptional human into this project, because I know it would make him proud.

Breathe of Life

Mellisa Jol-Elliott

‘Mel and Ben were the best of friends right from the moment they first spoke to one another. It was 2007 and Mel and Ben had just been hired as tour guides in Thailand at the same time. They were both so excited about guiding together in a country they both loved with all their hearts! 

The lust for life these two had when flying out to Thailand together in 2008 was out of this world! Their adventures around Asia were always filled with a ton of laughter, jokes and of course a ton of love for one another. Through all their travels their friendship grew stronger and deeper… they considered each other family. And what a family it was!! Mel quickly fell in love with the entire Trompetter family, and they accepted her with open and loving arms!

When Tara (Ben’s mom) started Live Like Ben after his passing in 2012 it was a natural feeling for Mel to step in and help where ever she could. She has thoroughly enjoyed remaining close to the Trompetter’s through all of the Live Like Ben projects and will continue to give back to the Thai children in whatever way she can.’


Intl. Finance & S.E. Asia Operations Manager
Free & Easy Traveler


Chris Sherry

Chris first met Ben in 2009, a few years into Ben’s career as a guide in Thailand, at a time when he was just starting his own Asian adventure. They became very close friends and bonded over many adventures, a few beers, and sharing the experiences of living and working in Thailand.  Chris is one of the lucky ones, finding a way to combine his passion for travel with a successful career.  These days Chris is still living and working in Thailand.  Based in Chiangmai, he does logistics and finance for an adventure travel company, and still jumps at every opportunity to travel and experience new adventures.

Kevin Bernardin CPA, CMAVice President of Program Development
 P \ 306-986-4500
C \ 306-341-2520

WEST FOUR Group of Companies Inc.
Madero \ Penner Doors & Hardware

Kevin Bernardin

Travel has played a big role in Kevin’s life, and it continues to be a passion he pursues whenever possible. In the beginning stages of his international travel he was fortunate enough to meet Ben and become fast friends with him. Despite working for competing companies at the time, they found a common bond  and would always share with each other the good, the funny and the hard times they encountered on the road. These days Kevin’s  travel is more domestic oriented within Canada as he’s changed careers and now enjoys the challenges and rewards that the construction industry in Canada provides. Kevin credits much of his success as a young executive in a very developed Canadian industry to the life experiences he gained through travel. Travel brings an education not just of other cultures and customs, but also an education of self. An education he aims to always pursue through travel.

Alex Sinsawas

Alex grew up on the beaches of Thailand with a frisbee in one hand and a fishing rod (that  he made himself!) in the other. Drawn to Railay Beach as a teenager, he fell in love with rock climbing and began working there as a climbing instructor (where he deservedly earned the nickname ‘Monkey’)! While climbing, he learned English, and met lots of new friends – one of whom was Ben! Ben and Alex hit it off right away and it wasn’t long before Ben started inviting Alex to come along on the trips with him. Ben hired Alex and they went on to be rock climbing, adrenaline seeking brothers for many years, managing all kinds of mischief together. Alex’s life was forever changed by his experience guiding and his passion continues to be spreading love and knowledge about his incredible country. These days he lives in Chiang Mai with his family and continues to pursue this dream. 

Niki Sinsawas

Born in Calgary, Canada and raised both there and in England, Niki grew to love travel from an early age. After graduating from University she decided to take off on a three month adventure to a  part of the world that was as different as possible than home – South East Asia! She did not anticipate, however, the way that Thailand would change her entire perspective and she instantly fell in love with this country and its’ vibrant culture and people. Rather than taking that flight home, she was hired as a tour guide and started a career that completely altered her life! It was through guiding that she was lucky enough to meet Ben, who quickly became a mentor and close friend, teaching her what it meant to be a tour guide and having too much fun for words. That ‘three month’ trip turned into a two year trip, then three, and now eight years later she lives in Chiang Mai with her family and continues to pursue her dreams of adventure and all things Thailand.

Max Rivest

Max is a Vancouver-based marketing and branding expert that consults for LLB Foundation and is the one who created our logo. He is the co-founder of an innovative social venture and has been working in the marketing space for over a decade. Knowing the Trompetter family since 2006, he is honoured to be part of the LLB Foundation.

Shannon Major

Shannon was born and raised in Calgary where she met her best friend, Tara, in high school. They became lifelong friends. Like sisters, they have travelled many roads together. From their crazy fun days to the wonderful motherhood days where she was honoured to be Ben’s godmother. They have shared an inseparable bond with each other and family.

Shannon followed the sun to the Coast, where the highlights of her career were as senior executive assistant in commercial property management, shopping centre and hotel development, and purchasing agent for Larco Investments’ Vancouver Hilton and Marriott hotels. Shannon is an independent graphic designer.

On a trip to Thailand in 2019, Shannon’s life changed direction. She left the corporate world and went on a journey of self-transformation to a village in the northern mountains. Shannon discovered a new purpose in life through the LiveLikeBen foundation and helping the village people.

Throughout Shannon’s life, a calling for adventure has been close to heart. She reflects on the days of hang-gliding with her ‘sister’ to the life changing trip following Ben’s footsteps through Thailand. Nowadays, you can find her nurturing her garden with her husband, spending time with her two amazing sons and working on Winnie Moo books!

Ashley Drody

Ashley is an international travel and lifestyle photographer who spends her summers documenting love and lifestyle in her home of British Columbia, and winters abroad photographing tourism and wellness retreats.

Ashley grew up with Bens younger sister, Meghan, and was always inspired by both of their adventures through Thailand. In 2016 she had the opportunity to visit Bens School alongside Meghan for the first time, and got to experience and photograph some very special moments in Pa Dang Luang Village for the Live Like Ben foundation.

Ashley hopes to visit Bens School again to document all of the beauty of the area and be involved in the positive progress the foundation is making in these small villages in Northern Thailand.

Bens adventurous spirit will continue to be a beautiful reminder to Ashley to live life to the fullest every day.

Shane Cebuliak


Matt Sawatzky

Matt Sawatzky is a creative filmmaker with extensive experience in the world of travel videography, with a career spanning over 15 years in video production.

Back in 2008, Matt took his love for travel and mixed it with his newfound passion for filmmaking. He had already spent some epic summers as a tour guide in Southeast Asia from 2003 to 2007, working with his good friends at Free & Easy Traveler. So, he decided to combine those experiences and became Free & Easy’s go-to videographer on their social media team until 2015.

During his Southeast Asia days, Matt had the incredible opportunity to meet and travel with the one and only, Ben Trompetter. Ben’s lust for life, his appetite for adventure (with a healthy dose of anarchy), and his genuine interest in immersing himself in a new culture left a lasting impression on Matt.

Ben was a real one and is greatly missed.

With immense gratitude and a shared commitment to the Live Like Ben Foundation, Matt actively collaborates with the organization in its mission to spread love and provide support to those in need. This collaboration stands as a heartfelt tribute to honour the enduring memory and remarkable legacy of Ben Trompetter.