I want to thank Jim/N3JT for nominating me to CWops. Thank you to my sponsors K1RV, AA3B, KB8GAE, and WT9U. Thanks to Hank/W6SX, Serge/VA3SB, and Van/N5TOO who also volunteered to nominate me. Thank you to the advisors who allowed me to become a CWA groupie Bill/AJ8B, Mac/NN4K, Al/K0AD, Dennis/K2SX, Mark/K5RG, Van/N5TOO, and Kurt/AD0WE. Most importantly I am thankful for the support of my best friend/OM/Elmer/Keith/KU1N who has been very patient with my goal to learn CW even as it led me to take over his radio, “borrow” his paddle, and steal all the contest time. How many students are lucky enough to have two Morserinos on the breakfast table to practice CW QSOs and plan the day over coffee or tea?
I am a retired physical therapist. In the Spring of 2014 I helped my grandson who was 14 study for his amateur radio license. That summer I went to the ARRL’s 100th anniversary where I heard talks about DX adventures and went on a trip to headquarters where I saw hundreds of QSL cards. That was all I needed to decide to get my own license. I was licensed in October 2014 as KC1CRS and by March 2015 I had my Extra Class license. My amateur radio interests grew from QSL cards to providing communication for community events (foot and bike events), going after awards (DXCC, WAS, and Triple Play), running GOTA stations, Field Day, and supporting YLs interests in amateur radio. Busy taking care of family, I don’t have the opportunity to travel except in my dreams but I let amateur radio take me to meet the people and learn about all the places I can’t visit. In addition to amateur radio I enjoy photography, cross country skiing, hiking, and gardening.
Finally, as the bands became more challenging I decided to learn CW taking CWA classes and practicing every day. Unfortunately I went outside to take photos of snow on trees, fell, and sustained a minor head injury several weeks before my first intermediate class began. Al/K0AD was patient and kind with a good sense of humor and I stuck with the class. My speech pathologist, Peter, saw my frustration with working on memory tasks that had been easy for me in the past and helped me use my desire to learn CW to recover from my head injury. Peter would make lists of the abbreviations and look up stories of DX adventures to keep me engaged. I completed my first intermediate class and graduated speech therapy at the same time. After my head injury I no longer thought the “Can’t Remember Stuff” part of my call sign KC1CRS was funny and I was then lucky enough to get N1YL as a call sign.
Since November 2019 I have continued my CW journey with the Long Island CW club where I have made many friends and been able to find the flexibility I have needed due to my caregiving responsibilities. The tools gathered from CWA and LICW as well as the friendships I have made have sustained me through a head injury, caregiving challenges, and the year of COVID isolation. Finally on April 24, 2021, I achieved another milestone and joined CWops….Thank you all! C U AGN soon on the air.