Henry Christle , WA1VAB

CWops # 1839, from Littleton , MA , USA.

Amateur radio sparked my productive years excitement, and more,. Ham radio was my ticket off the farm tractor and into the dynamic world.

In 1952 at age 14 teachers judged me as a belligerent unfocused student with unreachable potential. I learn by doing. My big take away from HS was 7th grade typing, like amateur radio, a good choice.

In 1953, I discovered potential in ham radio, and was absorbed learning how to improve myself with self-reliance training. Learning though reading and doing, kit building, and troubleshooting.

Afternoons in HS (’55), I was earning money fixing car radios, and color TV house calls. Accelerated technology dragged me with it spanning 50 years from 1958 – 2008, and covered the full spectrum of instrumentation management, Electron Microscopes, NMR, Mass, ION Implanters, Computer data bases, and programming.

During my hard working 70-80’s ham radio was my relaxation. CW Traffic work provided training for speed, the need for QSK, the discovery of a TenTec 540 on my desk in ’78 and on my desk today 40 years later. In ‘79 I added an M-300C keyboard and could attained conservational CW at 60 wpm. CW gets though like the Pony Express, and very reliable.

Now I’m 80, and “looking forward”. The sudden increasing need for reliable, deployable emergency shortwave mobile communications, to replace the reliance on digital networked communications is real. This means batteries, QRP, CW, antennas and young operators.

We must create and provide the young with inspiration with something more objective than Facebook and Selfie obsession. They need to obsess about the world to external them. This is what short wave radio did for me.

CWops is actively leading CW to a permanent future in Ham Radio. ARRL, and my local club BARS, in Billerica Mass, are working developing CW Ham Radio as an alternative obsession for youth. I have a lot of stories to swap and am looking forward to QSO’s with CWops members.