I became interested in Amateur Radio while attending high school at Redwood High in Larkspur, CA. One of our neighbors up the street Lou Glaser, WB6WNF had a great old "glow in the dark" ham station. Hearing all of those signals through the rigs in his shack fascinated me. I don't recall exactly what he had, but I think it may have been close to this glow-in-the-dark stack of rigs.
Though I didn't pursue getting my ticket during High School, after graduating, I joined the US Navy and becamea Radioman. I served onvarious surface ships; USS Twining (DD540) which was a WW2 vintage 2100 Fletcher class destroyer. While on Twining, I was QRV as NWLV. I also served on the USS Perkins (DD877) which was a late 2250 Gearing class WW2 destroyer. On the Perkins I was QRV as NPOV. I did serve as well with NIOTC (Naval Inshore Operations Training Command) which became COSRIVDIV 11 (Coastal River Division 11) at Mare Island. I was stationed on the command CCB (Command Communications Boat.) The newest surface vessel I served on was a Knox class Fast Frigate - the USS Lang (FF1060). While on the USS Lang, I met Tom St. George who was my leading Petty Officer (RM1). Tom stayed in California after being honorably discharged. He now operates from his home in Southern California as Amateur Radio Station K6JLW. I also was able to serve stateside atshore stations such as the US Naval Communications Station at Rough & Ready Island which is near Stockton, CA. In 1973 I received high speed morse code operator training (Radioman 2304 designation.) I went on from there to become trained as a Nuclear Submarine Sailor at the US Naval Submarine School in Groton, CT. I qualified and accepted my dolphins on a Nuclear Fast Attack submarine, the U.S.S. Haddo (SSN604). I was QRV on the Haddo as NZUV...The Navy was a great way to obtain an education about radio. I was trained to use the AN/WRT1, AN/WRT2, AN/URC32, AN/BRT2, R1051A/URR, T871 transmitter, AN/URC-9, the old Gibson Girl emergency rig the AN/CRT3, AN/WRR2 as well as the venerable and seemingly indestructable R390A/URR just to name a few. Using the floating wire antenna on the sub was quite an education as well. The sub I was on used an aerial that we call a 'screwdriver' antenna now - it was elevated out of the 'sail' on the boat via hydraulics until fully extended and could then be remotely tuned from the shack and used while on the surface or at periscope depth.
USS Twining DD-540 USS Perkins DD-877 NAVCOMSTA SANFRAN USS Haddo SSN-604
Coastal River Division 11 Mare Island USS Lang FF-1060
About a year or so after being honorably discharged from the U.S. Navy, I met up with a friend from high school who was a ham - Dick Collier K7SD. Dick became my elmer and helped me set up my first ham station (Atlas 210x and a dipole). All of this occurred while I was living in Fremont, CA.
My first callsign was KA6MVF. Granted in 1980 by the FCC after passing the test at their offices in San Francisco. I went on to Technician and was granted the call N6DUQ. I met and enjoyed the company of many very friendly ham operators while living in Fremont. I became an active member of the South Bay Amateur Radio Association (SBARA.) Some of my new ham friendswere KB6TQ Gary, KQ6A Sharon, N6DFL Patrice, KD6DX Jim, and WA6MDI Dick. Dick gave us a ride in a glider (all three of us together!) up over Mission Peak just south of the City of Fremont. That ride was one to remember... and Dick landed the glider back at the little Fremont airport with ease. Dick now resides in Coppell, Texas but still has his 6 land call.
During these years living in FremontI worked for Narda Microwave as an RF Technician working on small signal microwave amplifiers. I also worked at Watkins-Johnson and was a mechanical engineer on the team that produced the .01Mhz to 18Ghz receiver for the F16. Had a short stint working as a drafting designer at Gillig Bus helping design a couple of custom busses for Boeing. After that short stint we moved to Livermore, CA. This was where my wife and I dug my first 5 cubic yard hole and filled it with concrete to hold up my first tower, a Rohn HDBX48.
I then began to improve my skills and knowledge in Ham Radio and tested at the FCC office at 555 Battery St. in San Francisco
There in San Francisco, in an old echo-y testing room, I earned my General, Advanced and then Extra licenses.
Interesting item - the City of Livermore was established by and named by Robert Livermore's friend William Mendenhall. Mr. Mendenhall is a ancestor of mine! Small world! While living in Livermore, Galt and Modesto, I worked 15 years for the
While working at the laboratory, I met Dave Dirks who is now KJ6GSY, Rich AD6X, Jim AA6F, Dick, N6DVY(SK), Jack W6UKW, Len WA6SDA(SK), Don W6OA, Ron AD6KV, Vince and Marie KB6BD and KA6LEW, Gary KF6U and others. I served as the President of the Livermore Amateur Radio Klub (LARK) and was an active member ofthe Livermore RACES team. During these years I became interested in DX and Contesting and was able to have a lot of fun while being a member of NCDCX and NCCC.
(photo below of the Modesto area which is the County Seat for Stanislaus)
Though I had about a ten year period while my children were young that I was inactive,
I have enjoyed the hobby and had genuine interest all along the way.
This is downtown Pella "The Molengracht" Scene from our annual "Tulip Time"
This is a shot of Lake Red Rock, the dam and the spillway. Construction is now taking place that will convert this dam to a hydro-electric plant to open and begin providing electricity in 2018.
My home is near Lake Red Rock which is a man-made Army Corps of Engineers flood control lake.
When on the air, I may be on one of many rigs. I use the Icom 706MkIIG, a nicely aged Icom IC-751A and two old Yaesu FT-107Ms that are usually in some state of disrepair! For aerials I have an MFJ-MA5V6M vertical on the deck, a homebrew 20 meter sloper and a 160-10m Carolina Windom. I have had an awful lot of fun with these. Being at one of the high spots in SE Iowa with no obstructions helps a lot! Living in a rural area helps with noise as well.
I am also a Green Bay Packers Fan (adopted by official cheese heads) as well as a St. Louis Cardinals fan!
I have to tell you that though being a ham has been a terrific hobby, it cannot compare with the joy I have from submitting myself to my Lord Jesus Christ. Without Him, as the Bible says - we are nothing!.... don't just take my word for it, read the Bible some time - start with the Gospel Message found in the book of John. and hopefully you'll see too!
73 and c u on the bands!
7137994 Last modified: 2016-03-04 15:37:12, 14629 bytes
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