I've been interested in Ham Radio since I was about 13. Growing up in rural North Georgia in the 60's there were not many Ham operators around to be an elmer. My grandfather had an old RCA broadcast/shortwave receiver that he gave me. I had a lot of fun listening to Hams working AM and CW. Even though I did not get a license then, I keep my interest throughout high school and college. After college I started working for Southern Bell (Bellsouth/AT&T).
After a few years I found out there were several Hams and a local club (MATPARC) at Southern Bell. Thanks to Dave Meadows, K4LDI and Jim Stafford, W4QO that served as my elmers, I got involved in the club and was able to get my novice license in 1984. I upgraded to extra class in 1985 and have been enjoying the hobby ever since.
In the late 80’s and early 90’s I served as Newsletter Editor for MATPARC and also served terms as club VP and President. During that time I was an ARRL volunteer tester and instructor of several Ham radio classes. I participated in several MATPARC Field Days and public service actives working 10 yrs for the Peachtree Rd race, 5 yrs in the Thanksgiving Day Marathon and lead communications for the Juvenile Diabetes Walk-a-Thon for 5 years. In the early 90’s my XYL got her license (KD4APR) and we have work several events together.
My first HF rig was a Kenwood TS-520 and a Kenwood 2 meter rig for FM and Packet. I really enjoyed working SSB and CW. I also acquired a Heathkit HW-8 and fell for QRP.
Today my station consists of a Icom IC-746PRO, Icom IC-706MKIIG, Yaesu FT-817 for QRP, Yaesu FT-847, and Drake TR4. I also have a Yaesu FT-857 in my truck with an Outbacker antenna for HF mobile. I work several modes (SSB, CW, PSK31, and FM) from my base station.
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