10 March 2012

HAM Radio: Brings the Family Together

Mom, up on the radio tower. Oct, '67.
As a child, I have very distinct memories of my parents HAM radio equipment. Tucked away in a nook of the house, just off the kitchen, was the "HAM Shack". For the longest time, I had no idea why we called it that.

My parents used HAM radio every day as a young couple, when my Dad was at sea with the Navy, and Mom was home in Alabama. Not only did they talk to each other, they connected other couples in their same situation, passing messages back and forth.

My Mom gained her knowledge from her father, Louis Heerten. She is the oldest child in the family, and they certainly had a very strong bond. My father was able to connect with his new father-in-law by working on radio equipment together.

Today, my parents are retired. Dad has the radio equipment up and running again for the first time in a long time. Mom tends to stand over his shoulder and listen in, even when she's pretending she's not.


  1. A very nice story. At age 70 I just received my technician class license. I don't have a radio yet, but when I do have one (a handy talkie), I will try to find other hams interested in genealogy in other nearby areas. In my local genealogy society there are several older gents who are hams.

    1. Thanks! I couldn't be happier that my parents are getting back into it - it makes them happy and helps them connect socially with their community, which makes me happy. I know every morning, my Dad gets on and "checks in" with the local club members. It has become a great part of his morning routine. Congrats on getting your license! I hope it brings you as much joy as it does them; a fantastic hobby.


Please comment! I would love to hear your thoughts!