I recently had a CW contact with Len, KJ6BKJ. He sent me a touching letter that I want to share with the club. It shows you never forget the code. Here it is
Dear John (KG4NXT),
It was a sincere pleasure contacting you on the radio. I recently got my
first set of QSL cards and so you will be among the first recipients.
More important, you are my first CW contact since 1958. Sorry for the
horrible job of sending. The picture depicts my inspiration for getting a
ham license. I have been attempting to canoe the entire Mississippi
River for the last several years. I do it with two others. Two of us get in
the boat and paddle downstream to meet with the third who drives a
pickup truck to meet. The pickup driver then changes position with one
of the guys in the boat. Then all head downstream to the next meeting
Occasionally, the pickup and boat groups have difficulty getting to the
agreed upon point and need to communicate with each other. CB
radios, walkie talkies, and cell phones have proven unreliable for this
task. Hence, we decided to try ham radio. We do about one week per
year. We start where we left off last time and have reached a point just
south of St. Louis. So, we have completed about 1,300 miles after
starting in Lake Itasca in Minnesota. We have another 1,000 miles to
I live in NC now but was living in CA when I started all this.
I just put up a HF antenna (Cushcraft vertical) hence the need for QSL
I had a novice license in 1958 and let it expire.