Yaesu FT-2000 transceiver.
Kenwood TL-922A amplifier.
2 meter/70cm transceiver.
Echo Link node 8421 K3BEQ-L. 147.570 MHz.
Rohn 25G 70' tower supporting:
HyGain TH-7 seven element triband Yagi @ 70'. (Including the bird)
Diamond X-300 2m/70 cm vertical @ 80'.
40m sloped dipole off 70' tower.
30m dipole @ 60'.
ARRL TOP OF THE DXCC HONOR ROLL: Phone/Mixed 355 Countries.
ARRL DXCC CW: 306 Countries (4 more pending)
ARRL DXCC TEN METERS: 351 Countries. (1 more pending)
WAZ TEN METERS: Single Band Phone Certificate: #101.
QST and POPULAR COMMUNICATIONS magazine articles at: www.gmramd.org/GMRA_Articles.html
QST Digital Article: "The Evolution of DX Spotting": http://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/arrl/qst_201210/index.php (Arrl Members )
It was 1947 and I was looking into a store window display one winter evening. Staring back at me was a Hallicrafter SX-28 shorwave receiver. Something clicked. Can't explain it. The tag said $50. A lot of money back then and I was all of 16. Mentioned it to my mom and I guess she had some radio genes because the next day the receiver was on a table in my room. That was the beginning of my radio adventure.
A few years later I attended the YMCA Radio School in New York City to try and obtain a Second Class Radiotelgraph License to become a ship Radio Officer with the U.S. Merchant Marine. It was the height of the Korean War and radio operators were in high demand. During the 6 month course of theory and morse code I decided to go for my Amateur Radio License and succeeded, receiving the callsign of W2GPW. However shortly after the course ended a job opportunity with the federal government became available and I relocated to Washington D.C. at the ripe age of 20.
That too was short lived. I was drafted into the U.S. Army six months later. Trained with the 5th Armored Division in Fort Chaffee, Arkansas and then reassigned to the Armed Forces Security Agency. Two years later I was discharged and married on the same day. They said it wouldn't last. (We celebrated our 60th wedding anniversary on November 21, 2013.) "They" are all gone. After the honeymoon I returned to my former civilian job and relocated to Alexandria, Virginia. The new callsign was W4GPW. At that time you could request a specific callsign. No charge.
During the next 6 decades or so we moved 4 times, had three children who in turn gave us 4 grandchildren and one great grandchild. A son and grandson were taken from us at early ages. Much too early.
Many antennas and rigs later we had the station I had always dreamed of. (See photos above). However, I miss the days when I struggled to put up another and better wire antenna or yagi. I miss the adrenalin associated with DXing and the collection of new DXCC countries. (Still there but on a lesser scale.) As one gets older and wiser, it is hopefully accompanied by serenity. The "rush" is not so predominate. Time for the new generation to experience the thrills and excitement that I did and still do to some degree. See you in the pileups and watch out. This old codger is still very competative.
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