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Amateur Radio:

WA4LJJ's Radio hobby:

Doug Thompson

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One of my favorite and most used ham radio links is QRZ.COM.
8-2-2005: I am presently not active in Amateur Radio, but I do keep my FCC license current. Ham Radio is a diverse and interesting hobby which attracts a wide range of talent. I enjoy it but modern communications has has rendered code impotent. But for me, it will always be a good way to communicate under adverse conditions. It remains a skill that not everyone can master and that is why many of us still hang on to it as a viable mode of communication today.

was originally licensed as a novice, WN4MYI in 1967. I upgraded to Conditional with the call sign WB5HMY while living in BIoxi, Ms. Eventually, I became a General, WA4LJJ. During a one year tour in Greece on Levkas Island, (1973-1974), I operated SV0WXX. The picture to the left is of WB4KZI &me shortly after I received my Novice call.

With the help of Randy Grigg, WB4KZI as my QSL manager, I won the 1973 CQ World Wide DX Contest for Single Operator all band for Greece. Randy took care of hundreds of QSL cards and kept everything organized.

The highlight of my 12 month tour on Lefkas Island, Greece was on March 17th, 1974. While calling CQ on 15 meters, Randy answered me. We carried on for more than an hour and signals were S-9 plus much of the time. I taped the complete QSO and he did the same on his end.

My modest station consisted of a Swan Cygnet 260, a cw filter built by Randy, a SSB audio speech compressor also thanks to Randy, and my trusty vibroplex bug. My antenna was a simple dipole with which I worked the world! While I worked a lot of Side Band, my true love was and always has been Morse Code.

Every ham should be on the business end of pile up's like I've seen. It does wonderful things for one's ego! There were times when the "big boys", the multi-kw ops would try to drown out the small qrp ops. It was then I listened extremely hard for those who whispered.... The QRP ops. Those were the ones I answered first.

The Island of Scoropius was just next door to Lefkas. That was the home of John & Caroline Kennedy who lived there much of the time. They came up to our communications site for a little taste of the United States. During their visit, they watched a movie or two. Secret Service people were everywhere, to insure their safety.

Before they came up, their Mother called ahead and told us not to show any monster movies, just some good family stuff. Well, the first thing they wanted to watch was a "monster" movie! They were very well mannered kids and no different than other youngsters their age.

Their visit provided a little excitement to an other wise mundane existence. Our site was located on a mountain top 2800 feet above the Ioanian Sea. The view from there was just awesome. My Ham Station was the center of attention and my nick name quickly became "QSL". Guys dropped in and out of my room anytime. Ham radio provided much entertainment for me as well as the rest of the 28 men there.

Bigger is not always better. My gear now is an old Kenwood TS 430 S Transciever and a MFJ 451 Morse keyboard for sending high speed code.

For decoding the incoming Morse Code, I use an aging but still functioning MB Computer.

MB = My Brain.

I am presently inactive but plan on getting back on the air in the not too distant future.

Before all the old CW ops go slient key on me!

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