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ARRL Letter


The ARRL Letter
Vol. 20, No. 23
June 8, 2001


* HamCom Promotes Education in Amateur Radio
* Kentucky Hams Substitute Their Repeater For "Deaf" 911 System:

     Alinco still catching up with service issues following move
     ARRL 2001 Atlantic Division Award Winners announced
     Eleven year-old ham gets Life membership and 60-year plaque
     Francis Shepard, W7HAH, SK
     Indiana policeman receives first Radio Hero Award
     ISS Commander Frank Culbertson is now KD5OPQ
     Mario Acuna, LU9HBG, elected Fellow of AGU
     Meningitis scare at school brings out Ohio ARES unit
     SKYWARN operator struck by lightning
     Walter Taylor, K2MLT, SK
     Western Washington DX Club to host Northwest DX Convention
     WIDAD, K1MOM and K1D call signs mean it's Kids Day again

Editor's note: The ARRL Letter and ARRL Audio News are on vacation. They
will return June 13. This abbreviated update was produced by the editorial
staff. See you next week.


The West Gulf Division Convention and HamCom 2001 is just days away--June
8-10--at the Arlington, Texas, Convention Center. According to this year's
Chairman, Maury Guzick, W5BGP, it promises to be an education in Amateur
Radio. "For starters we have a new attraction this year that's never been
done before," Guzick wrote. "The ARRL and Ham-Com have joined together to
bring the ARRL Amateur Radio Emergency Communications Course to you, live
and in-person. It's the same course as the one ARRL offers on-line, but with
a live teacher in a classroom style." 

ARRL Public Service Specialist Steve Ewald, WV1X, will conduct the two-day
course at HamCom. Students have pre-registered and will attend class
sessions Saturday morning and afternoon, completing the course Sunday
morning. This is the first time that Level I: Introduction to Amateur Radio
Emergency Communications (EC-001) will be offered as a classroom course at a
weekend convention.

To learn more about the ARRL Certification and Continuing Education Program
and the Amateur Radio Emergency Communications Course, see .


Twice within a 24-hour period, Harold Hicks, KE4HON, an EMT for the Whitley
County, Kentucky, ambulance service, and his father, Jim Hicks, WB4CTX, a
Kentucky Asssistant Section Manager, used an H-T, the KB4PTJ 444.050 MHz
repeater and a telephone to relay emergency information to 911 dispatchers.

On Sunday morning, May 27, Whitley County and McCreary County Emergency
Medical Services responded to an automobile accident in a remote area where
the two counties join. Both ambulance services lost radio contact with their
911 dispatchers due to the remoteness of the area. They could not relay
patient information or their location to their dispatcher, nor could they
advise whether they needed a helicopter to fly the patient out. KE4HON,
using his H-T, contacted WB4CTX via the KB4PTJ repeater and asked him to
relay information to the respective 911 dispatchers. Using the repeater and
his home phone, Hicks advised Whitley County EMS that the patient was
conscious and alert and that the helicopter and rescue crews could stand
down. He told the McCreary County 911 that their unit was okay and would be
the one transporting the patient.

Incredibly, less than 12 hours later, another accident occurred in almost
the same place and with the same consequences regarding loss of 911-repeater
contact. The same situation played out-Hicks-to-Hicks-to 911. Whitley County
EMS was dispatched and the patient was brought to the hospital.

Again Amateur Radio stepped into the breach and rendered a public service.
Incidentally, the KB4PTJ repeater and the ambulance service repeater are
less than three air miles apart--John Meyers, N4GNL 



* Alinco still catching up with service issues following move: The transfer
of Alinco's distribution system from California to ATOC Amateur Distributing
in Ohio is nearly complete, according to Craig Cota, a principal with ATOC.
Complicating the transfer was the fact that the Dayton Hamvention occurred
as the transition was taking place. "Our timing couldn't have been worse,"
said Cota. "We were literally unloading a moving van, and driving
merchandise directly to the dealers at the show." One aspect of the transfer
still pending is the service function. "We had hoped to have factory
training personnel work with our staff in the transition. Unfortunately,
plans were delayed," said Cota. "We will continue to honor warranty claims,
even if the warranty expires during the transition period." For More
Information: .

* ARRL 2001 Atlantic Division award winners announced: The ARRL Atlantic
Division Awards Committee has named Roy Heimel, AB4XS, 2001 Atlantic
Division Ham of the Year. Dennis Silage, K3DS, received the 2001 Atlantic
Division Technical Achievement Award. The committee members made their
choices based upon ballots received. Heimel has served his club, the
Headwaters ARC, in many capacities and has organized and taught amateur
radio licensing courses. He has been associated with the Boy Scouts for over
22 years, and served as a Girl Scout leader. Silage, K3DS, is the technical
chairman for the Delaware County ARA and the Mid-Atlantic ARC. He is a
frequent speaker on technical subjects at amateur radio clubs through out
the Philadelphia, Pennsylvania area--Bernie Fuller, N3EFN, ARRL Atlantic
Division Director.

* Eleven year-old ham gets Life membership and 60-year plaque: Ryan Rose,
K3RLR, of Pasadena, Maryland, got more than he bargained for at the Dayton
Hamvention. Originally licensed in May 1999 as a Novice--KB3DVA--Ryan now
hold a General ticket. This year at Hamvention he took out an ARRL life
membership (thanks to his dad, Bob, AA3RR). Due to a vendor error, Ryan's
plaque credited the 11-year-old with 60 years of membership instead of Life
Membership! The problem was corrected, and the correct Life Membership
plaque arrived a few days later.

* Francis Shepard, W7HAH, SK: Francis Shepard, W7HAH, of Stevensville,
Montana died May 16. He was 79. An ARRL member, Shepard held VUCC on 50, 144
and 432 MHz. His 50-MHz certificate was endorsed for 625 grid squares. "Shep
led the 2-meter EME roles for contacts with a four-Yagi system. As a ham, he
lent a hand and his friendship to many, far and wide," said his friend, Pat
Hamilton, WA7PDC. "I will miss listening to W7HAH work the stations I barely
even heard."

* Indiana policeman receives first Radio Hero Award: Bill Ward, N9RHY, of
the Henry County, Indiana Sheriff's department received the Radio Hero Award
in recognition of his use of Citizens Band radio in the capture of two
suspected murderers. Ward is the first recipient of this award, which will
be presented biannually by its sponsors-REACT International Inc, Cobra
Electronics and Popular Communications magazine. The incident involved two
Vermont high school students who were suspected of murdering a husband and
wife-both professors at Dartmouth College. Ward intercepted a truckdriver's
CB call asking if anyone could help these youths with a ride further west.
Without identifying himself, Ward told the youths to wait and someone would
be along to pick them up! In an earlier story regarding REACT, ARRL and
REACT signed a Memorandum of Understanding intended to promote joint
coordination of the resources of both organizations and recognize the
capabilities of individual members to facilitate the flow of information to
and from the public during disaster and emergency situations. For the
complete MOU, see

* ISS Commander Frank Culbertson is now KD5OPQ: The latest NASA astronaut to
become an Amateur Radio operator is the commander of Expedition 3, Frank
Culbertson, KD5OPQ. Joining him on the International Space Station as part
of the Expedition 3 crew will be cosmonauts Mikhail Turin and Vladimir
Dezhurov, who will also have Amateur Radio licenses prior to launch.
Culbertson has logged over 344 hours in space. Shuttle Mission STS-105,
scheduled to fly in August, will ferry Commander Culbertson to the ISS. It
will return with Expedition 2 crewmembers Susan Helms, KC7NHZ; Yury Usachev,
RW3FU; and James Voss who have spoken via Amateur Radio with students in 15
schools during scheduled ARISS QSOs.

* Mario Acuna, LU9HBG, elected Fellow of AGU: Mario Acuna, LU9HBG, has been
elected Fellow of the American Geophysical Union, an honor reserved for the
top one percent of the scientists working in Geophysics and Space Physics.
The award was made at the AGU Spring Meeting in Boston. Acuna, well known in
the AMSAT/Satellite community, helped in the development of P3A, AO-10 and
AO-13. For many years Acuna has been the supplier of high accuracy
magnetometers flown on the UoSATs , professional earth-orbiting satellites
and deep-space probes.

* Meningitis scare at school brings out Ohio ARES unit: When two fifteen
year old students in a near-by community died of Meningitis, the Salem, Ohio
community hospital set up antibiotic dispensing stations at the southeast
elementary school as a precaution. At times the line exceeded 1000 people.
Hospital phone lines were jammed by incoming calls. People standing in line
to get medication were using their cell phones making matters worse. ARES
EC, KA8OEB, activated the Salem club and set up stations at the school and
hospital. Members of Columbiana County ARES and Salem Area ARA assisted,
using 2-meter and 70cm repeaters. ARES services ran for two days. More than
37000 people in Salem and Alliance received antibiotics.

* SKYWARN operator struck by lightning: Danny Townsend, KB5ZEA, was struck
by lightning on Sunday, May 27, while engaged in SKYWARN reporting. As
Townsend keyed his mike to respond to KD5JGW's weather report, lightning hit
the tower, destroying the station equipment and knocking Townsend to the
floor. He was taken to the hospital and found to be OK, but he says he still
has a ringing in his ears. "As we operate Skywarn and ARES, we need to keep
in mind the dangers we can be exposed to," said Townsend. " I have always
been conscious of lighting and what it can do, but have continued to operate
during bad weather. I will continue to do what I can to help my fellow man,
but with a little more caution. I will attempt to rebuild my station with
total emergency power as well as attic antennas."--KB5ZEA.

* Walter Taylor, K2MLT, SK: Walter Taylor, K2MLT, of Hammondsport, New York-
died April 20. He was 69. A fourth-generation vintner, Taylor was also an
artist, inventor, aviator and poet. An ARRL member, his radio interests also
included ownership of two commercial broadcast stations. Among his survivors
are his wife, Lillian, three sons, a daughter, and two grandchildren.

* Western Washington DX Club to host Northwest DX Convention: The Western
Washington DX Club will host the Northwest DX Convention--DXing in the 21st
Century!--in Seattle, Washington, July 20-22 at the Everett Holiday Inn.
Speakers include Bill Fisher, W4AN; Carl Luetzelschwab, K9LA; DXCC Manager
Bill Moore, NC1L; Garry Shapiro, NI6T and NCJ Editor Dennis Motschenbacher,
K7BV. DX videos will be shown hourly. Send questions to
or to WWDXC, PO Box 395, Mercer Island, WA 98040. For on-line registration
and the up to date convention agenda, visit the WWDXC Web site, .

* WIDAD, K1MOM and K1D call signs mean it's Kids Day again: Peter and Jeanne
Schipelliti, W1DAD and K1MOM, respectively, and their kids Geena, age 6 and
Luciano, age 4, have activated the special 1X1 call sign, K1D. The family
wanted to promote ARRL's Kid's Day and assist hams in igniting the interest
of children in Amateur Radio. They plan to use the call sign from June 2-17.
Kid's Day is June 16, from 1800-2400Z. Listen for K1D on 28350, 21380,
14270, 7230 and 3895 kHz. Hams who plan to put youngsters on the air for
Kid's Day, can get a free Amateur Radio coloring book and youthful operating
aids from K1MOM at: For more info on Kid's Day, see: .

The ARRL Letter is published Fridays, 50 times each year, by the American
Radio Relay League--The National Association For Amateur Radio--225 Main St,
Newington, CT 06111; tel 860-594-0200; fax 860-594-0259; Jim Haynie, W5JBP, President

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The ARRL Letter offers a weekly summary of essential news of interest to active amateurs that is available in advance of publication in QST, our official journal. The ARRL Letter strives to be timely, accurate, concise and readable.

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