Saturday, February 3, 2018

It's been a while...

Seems like a month or two has gone by since I got to spend much time on the air.  The band conditions have been challenging to say the least.  Today I was able to get on the air for a bit and managed to work Bill Etter AG4EA down in Pelzer SC.  We traded 599's when we got started on the QSO but the QSB increased rapidly and we had to call it quits after about 10 minutes or so.  To show how small this world is getting, Bill mentioned that he knew a friend of mine, Ivin W9ILF (Now N9IVI), and we had also worked each before, a couple years ago.  How cool is it to just be QSOing on 40m and run into another ham that knows your friends.  We could have talked longer but the conditions were heading south fast. 

Bill was running 50w on this Ten Tec Corsair into a G5RV, I was pushing 10w out of my K2 into the infamous attic dipole.  Things were going great, until they weren't. 

KE1LA Joel at FDIM 2002
This week I learned of the passing of an old QRP friend, Joel Denison KE1LA.  Joel lived up in Strong Maine with his wife Grace and had been battling pancreatic cancer for about a year.   He was a "Po' ole displaced Cajun lad" originally from Louisiana and was a frequent contributor to the club newsletter "The Bacon Bits" and to the QRP ARCI "QRP Quarterly".  

His signature was well known, "Up here in Maine - freezin" and his wit will certainly be missed.   In 2002 Mike WB8ICN and I picked "Doc" Joel up at the Dayton airport and took him to Four Days In May.  They still talk about that FDIM to this day.   

Joel loved to play with wire antennas, and was somewhat known for his wire beams in the trees up there, aimed at Europe and Asia, he was a good QRPer and had a fine fist.  I'm sorry we won't hear his call anymore.   Best 72 es OO to you KE1LA... you were a good piggie. 

Best 73 de KB9BVN

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