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W5LEX is the South Texas Amateur Radio Club station aboard the USS Lexington.

The USS Lexington was launched 26 September 1942 and was commissioned on 17 February 1943.   USS Lexington was 872' long, moving at 33 knots, and her full load displacement was 33,000 tons.  The first flight from her deck was on 22 April 1943 in a North Americn SNJ-4C.  Commander Bennett Wright launched at 1745 and made the first arrested landing 6 minutes later.  Her battle history starts 18 September 1943 at Tarawa.  It was decommissioned 11 October 1945 and then recommissioned 15 August 1955.  In 1955 The ship was modified to include the angle deck which extended her length to 910' and a displacement of 42,000 tons.  USS Lexington serverd throughout the Pacific and Atlantic fleets until December 1962 at which time, after completing operations with the Cuban Missle crisis, she became the training carrier.  An average of 1500 pilots were carrier qualified on the USS Lexington each year until her administrative decommissioning on 26 Novermber 1991.  The USS Lexington became a permanent Texas resident on 29 January 1992  and is located in Corpus Christi bay as a floating museum that  can be visited daily. 
The Corpus Christi Ham's immediately worked to get an amateur radio station located aboard the ship.  It is located in one of the many radio spaces within the ship and currently has HF as well as 2 meter and 440 Mhz equipment.  The antennas include Navy ship antennas as well as ham vertical antennas.  In 2014 a UHF repeater on 444.850 (pl103.5) was physically located on the ship with the antenna on the yard arm. (See YouTube video below.)  It is linked on IRLP (Node 4216 and Echolink 907637.  Efforts are underway to restore some of the period radio equipment that has been acquired on the ship for inclusion on the tours.  
 More information and coordination to tour and operate the radio aboard the Lexington may be obtained at the n5crp.org website.  

QSL Requests should include a SASE and sent to:
South Texas Amateur Radio Club
P.O. Box 2182
Corpus Christi, TX 78403
Attn: W5LEX QSL Manager


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