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Tuesday, March 5, 2013
A golden anniversary is special, and I hope someday my spouse and I will celebrate our 50th wedding anniversary.
My 50th birth anniversary and party are well behind me, and I have spent at least 50 years working.
This year marks 50 years since a 15-year-old kid living in northeast Pennsylvania, newly licensed as a "Novice-Class" amateur radio operator, "Ham," tapped out Morse code while a patient, experienced Ham in Wisconsin "copied" the transmission and replied.
Fifty years later "Perry" - call sign K9FHJ - is alive and still living in Waupun, Wis. His life as a teacher, being retired, losing his spouse and surviving cancer has had many turns, and so has my life.
A hobby like amateur radio that provides an indescribable joy after 50 years is special. It offers multicultural and inter-generational insight, friendship, learning and paying forward through service .
In what other circumstance can a youth address a teacher, doctor, senator, astronaut or even the King of Jordan by her or his first name? In the former King Hussein's case (callsign JY1), he reportedly insisted that on-the-air contacts called him, "Hussein."
Within easy reach of The Roanoke Times readership there are many active Amateur Radio Clubs eager to help interested people obtain their federal license that affords them the privileges to pursue a diverse, venerable, life-changing hobby for 50 years and beyond.
Just surf to ARRL.org and click on "Clubs" near the top of the website to find a group near you. My call sign is K3IW. See you on the air.
Weather JournalEarly mix, then ice storm Sunday