My name is Jerry. My QTH is Huntington, WV (Home of Marshall University – “GO HERD”!) Ever see the movie, “We Are Marshall”? That’s us!
I have always been a techno-geek. I literally cut my (baby) teeth on radio!
I began my flirtation with amateur radio in the late 60’s/early 70’s when I built a Heathkit HR-10 receiver, along with 2, and six meter plug-in converters. I am legally blind and these kits were, at times, a challenge. But, I can tell you they worked when I was done!
I also put up a 20-foot, six-element beam antenna – a monster. Funny story – my folks ran a pay fishing lake. The antenna was mounted on the side of the hill. We had a “regular” antenna mounted on our rooftop for broadcast TV. Folks were constantly telling us “no wonder you have such good (TV) reception, just look at that antenna”!!!
I “tinkered” with the ham hobby along with (gag) CB. I had the ham handbook, test keyer, and the interest – but no Elmer. (Didn’t know what one was then, actually.) The code part of the test scared me off. So, the ham hobby fell to the side in lieu of radio broadcasting.
I obtained my Radiotelephone Third Class Operator’s License With Broadcast Endorsement on March 21, 1969. To this day, I have the (faded and crinkled) renewal card in my wallet.
In 1971 I began my actual broadcast career. In 1972 I graduated Ashland Community College. In 1974 I graduated Morehead State University with a degree in Radio-Television and a Minor in Speech. In December of that year I began, what would eventually be, a thirty-plus year broadcast career.
My last radio gig was in 1996. The industry was not yet in “voice-track mode”
Currently, I am Media-Marketing Manager for a local non-profit organization that provides free services to the blind and visually impaired of our community – a position I have heald for the past seventeen years.
In the Summer of 2013, amateur radio again peaked my interest. I learned of the HandiHam program from a fellow staff member (himself an amateur radio operator, and now my Elmer). Since I am legally blind, I investigated and found the program to be just what I needed. I began to listen to their audio lectures, take on-line and iPad/iPhone practice tests. In May of 2013 I obtained my Technician ticket. And was issued the call KD8UWF.
In June, I took, and passed my General exam. The Extra, however, kicked my butt, so, more studying for me!
My shack is a modest one. (to show you how modest, the rig sits on the edge of the kitchen counter in the corner!) I currently use a Kenwood TS-570(D) on most HF QSO's, and an Icom IC-706 (original, not G, or II). I use the 706 mostly on 2-meters as I am a frequent NCS for the local A.R.E.S./R.A.C.E.S. nets. The 706 is tuned with a LDG IT-100 fed into a home-brew 20m and 40m inverted V for HF, and a J-pole for 2-meters. I also regularly use a 31' EagleOne vertical. I am sure the “collection of toys” will continue.
I am active in T.A.R.A., the Tri-State Amateur Radio Association, where I currently serve as club vice-president. I enjoy logging into our local 2-meter NETs and several NETs on 20, and 40-meters.
I recently (October 2013) made my first DX contact (a total surprise to me!) – a station in southern France! THAT WAS COOL! I hope to make many more DX contacts.
My other interests include Classic Country (which was my expertise during my broadcast days), Star Trek/Star Wars (or, Sci-Fi in general), The Waltons, playing guitar, and horsing around with our little Yorkie – “Riley”.
It is my fondest desire that I eventually become an Extra and continue to make friends worldwide through amateur radio!
6143015 Last modified: 2015-07-16 00:18:43, 6588 bytes
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