Topband: VK6HD SK
Jon Zaimes AA1K
jz73 at verizon.net
Fri Apr 12 22:59:51 EDT 2013
Very sad to hear of Mike's passing.
Flipping back through my old logs, handwritten on something called
paper, it appears our first QSO with Mike was on 40 meter CW in January
of 1980. But it is the second QSO I recall most, on 80 CW on the last
day of that month. We had had several exchanges when Mike reported my
signal had suddenly dropped several S units but he still had solid copy.
Looking up, I realized my manual antenna switch had been left with my
new "Beverage" receiving antenna connected to the transmitter, and Mike
was still hearing me with my 25 watts going into a wire only a few feet
off the ground. We both had a laugh when I told him what happened and,
back on my real transmit antenna, we carried on at full strength for a
few minutes more.
It was those golden ears of Mike's that gave us so many hundreds of
contacts on Topband -- the first in January of 1981 and the last 32
years later. He was there keeping the vigil, frequently the only DX
coming through. He'd drop in for a quick hello, just to let us know the
band was open -- halfway around the world -- when there was no other
sign it was open to anywhere. We'd swap notes on the weather, band
conditions and pass along tips on DX the other might need. Often he'd
stop back a half hour later with a new signal report. In the years
before packet and the Internet, and even after, he'd drop in quickly to
let me know one I needed in his part of the world was just a few kHz up
or down the band, and I'd do likewise.
We will miss our dear friend. Mike helped keep this band alive for so many.
73 and GL DX,
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