Amateur radio, known as “HAM” radio, is somewhat of a mystery to most people.
What is often thought of as a group of older retired men playing with radios is quite misleading. Amateur radio has a much more serious place in society.
My name is Ron Bath and I joined this service a few months ago, after spending a year researching LARA, the Lewisville Amateur Radio Association and its members. One would have to look far to find a more dedicated group of good people providing a vital service to the community and to the nation.
We provide emergency communications to first responders and support law enforcement and emergency service providers during disasters such as hurricanes and civil strife.
When tropical hurricane-force storms recently hit southern Texas and Louisiana, power lines and cell phone towers cut off almost all communication. I say almost everything because amateur radio operators in the affected areas turned on their generators, turned on their microphones, and were “on air” to provide much-needed emergency communications. Amateur radio operators are all resident volunteers and own and operate all the equipment they use. Interestingly, they pay for everything they need and do not receive any financial support from the government.
So what exactly are our radio operators doing?
They provide emergency communications for law enforcement, medical support, and report information about living and lost souls to loved ones who are cut off.
loved ones due to loss of power leading to communication failures. During the recent cyclonic activity that decimated the islands of Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic, all local means of communication fell silent. The United States organized and sent more than 100 volunteer amateur radio operators by military transport to the islands to restore vital communications for military and medical support. Many lives have been
saved and many more have been made better by the selfless efforts of these brave men and women.
Does the term “amateur radio operator” still sound like a bunch of old retirees sitting around their radios?
This article is accompanied by a course calendar and the dates, times and locations of the tests to become an amateur radio operator. Our group needs more young people and women to study, test and get your FCC amateur radio license. Those of us who are older, retired radio operators need to train and encourage the next generation of amateur radio operators to support us and keep going when our keys fall silent.
I encourage you to visit our website at https://w5lvc.org to find out more about us.
What is amateur radio?
It’s fun, fraternal and at the service of our community and our country… a proud tradition.
The general amateur radio license course will take place on April 28 and 29, May 5 and 6 and May 12 and 13. Those interested must take three sessions to complete the course. Each will take place from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily in the training room at Lewisville Central Fire Hall, 188 N. Valley Pkwy. The entrance to the training room is at the rear of the building next to the fuel pumps. The fee for the course is $ 15, which includes the licensing exam at the end of the course.
Fees are payable in cash, check or money order at the start of the first session of the course. There is no age limit for taking this course and taking the general license test. The only requirement is that you hold a current technician license.
The class will be taught using the ARRL Ham Radio General License Handbook, 8e Editing. Having the manual for the class is not compulsory but strongly suggested. It is also suggested that students review the manual before class sessions. The manuals can be purchased at ARRL.org, Amazon.com Barnes and Noble and other local bookstores.
To register for the course, complete the form on https://goo.gl/forms/GiwTSIhS8PeyXIDf1
The Lewisville Amateur Radio Association is a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting the “art” of radio, providing “hands-on” training and support within our club and amateur radio community, and bringing vital support to first responders during disasters and national emergencies in the community of Lewisville, Texas. .