My grandfather gave me a shortwave receiver when I was 9 years old. The year was 1968. Santa Claus brought me a 1.5 watt walkie talkie when I was 11. I hiked to the top of the Verdugo mountains in Glendale, California with my 1.5 watt walkie talkie and I made radio contact with Texas and New Zealand. I was learning radio propagation. At 13, I purchased a Drake 2B receiver and Heathkit DX-20 Transmitter from Frank Cuevas-W6AOA of Henry Radio in Los Angeles. In those days, Henry Radio was the largest supplier of used equipment. My neighbor-W6ZGZ built me a screen modulator for the DX-20 and helped me to learn morse code. One of the neighborhood kids and I got on the air as "bootleggers" (on cw). That's how learned how to operate amateur radio. We made up call signs until our licenses came in the mail. We also learned "illegal wire tapping" at a young age. What else can I say.......... Thanks to my neighbor, Ernie Hollis-W6ZGZ that I became an amateur radio operator.
I was first licensed at the age of 14. My call sign was WN6CEI. Three of us (kids) in the neighborhood got our licenses about the same time. The year was 1974. Matt Zilmer-WN6EGJ now W6NIA, Steve Wilson-WN6GFM now KA6S, and I,caused choas to the neighborhood. I interfeared with televisons all over the block with my homebrew 4-1000A amplifier. Infact, my neighbor, Ernie Hollis-W6ZGZ gave up watching TV! At 15 years old, I passed my general and was issued WB6CEI. Then at 18, I passed my extra class at the local FCC office in Long Beach, California, and was issued the call sign N6ZV.
At the age of 19, I was off to South America, Africa and the Indian Ocean (on my first dxpedition) with Neal Sulmeyer-AE6E now K4EA. We had the opportunity meet Dave Larsen-ZS6DN. In fact, we operated from ZS6DN, while staying at his ranch for a week. The year was 1979. Then, we were off to the island of Mauritius. The last stop was Swaziland, where I operated as N6ZV/3D6. While in Swaziland, I had the opportunity to meet 3D6BP.
In 1980, Steve Wilson-KA6S and I went back to Africa and the Indian Ocean. Our first stop was to the island of Mauritius, where we operated as 3B8ZV and KA6S/3B8. Our next stop was Rodriguez Island, where we operated as 3B9ZV. We had the opportunity to meet Jacky-3B8CF and Moossa-3B9AE. Steve Orland-AA6AA joined us in Mauritius, and we were off to the Comoro Islands, where we operated as D68GA and D68XX. Our last stop was Tromelin Island with FR0FLO and FR7BP, where I spent my 21rst birthday. We were there for ten days. FR7BP is now a silent key(SK). A future Tromelin Island Dxpedition is planned for November of this year. The Northern California DX Foundation is sponsoring the team. For more information, go to www.Tromelin2014.com
I returned to the Comoro Islands in 1983 and donated my radio equipment to "Dr. Bill" Barnett. "Dr. Bill" was licensed as D68WB. He is now retired in Laguna Woods, California and will be 100 years old in May of 2017. When Dr. "Bill" retired, he was replaced by Dr. John Mustol, who was licensed as D68JM.
In 1990, I returned again to the Comoro Islands, where I set up a fifty foot tower and a beam antenna at the home of Dr John Mustol. I also installed vertical antennas for 160,80 and 40 meters. I used this station for CQWW CW and SSB contest and more! Dr. Vince Thompson-K5VT-D68VT(SK) joined me in the Comoro Islands in 1990 for the CQWW CW contest. We worked all bands, 160 thru 6 meters, including "oscar satellite" using the call signs D68GA. I was active in CQWW contests from D68GA through 1993.
Other trips over the years have included Mayotte-FH0GA, French Guiana-FY0GA-CQWW, Martinique-FM0GA, Gualdelupe-FG0GA, St. Martin-FS/FG0GA. I had the opportunity to meet and operate with Michel-FM5CD, Mario-FY7YE, and FH8OM.
Darrell Bevan-N6DX and I operated as VP2VHL & VP2VHK.
I also had the opportunity to operate from KH6XX---KP2A---N6DX ---&--- K6SE.
I have operated using the following call signs-----WN6CEI-----WB6CEI-----N6ZV-----N6ZV/3D6-----3B8ZV-----3B9ZV-----D68GA-----D68XX-----FR0FLO/T-----FR7BP/T-----F0GA-----FH0GA-----5Z4GA-----FM0GA-----FY0GA-----FG0GA-----FG0GA/FS-----VP2VHK.
My operating location is Las Cruces, New Mexico. I am a member of www.W7DXX.com Superstation Internet Remote Base.
DOWNLOAD www.REMOTEHAMS.COM and ENJOY!
I am presently working on a project which involves teaching amateur radio to children in developing nations.
73 Don K6ZO
1249099 Last modified: 2014-09-09 02:00:02, 9479 bytes
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