With great hope I scanned the main story of Popular Mechanics’ March 2018 issue for its coverage of EmComm, ARES and Ham Radio in disaster scenarios, but found none. This is not a failing of the magazine but a failing of our own to make ourselves known to the non-ham world as useful members of the greater community and not just self-absorbed, slightly nerdy, technology hobbyists.
How can Popular Mechanics write a first person story on hurricane disaster recovery volunteer efforts in the US Virgin Islands and not mention #hamradio? Simple, we are not on their minds; they didn’t think about us at all. Maybe the author of the story didn’t see or come in contact with any hams during his mobilization. Yet if you read QST and CQ stories on EmComm, you’d think everyone knows us and loves us anywhere there’s bad weather. Which is it?
Well I don’t know yet. I can say since the hurricanes of 2017 I’ve become motivated to serve the public and give back something to repay for the free radio spectrum we’ve been given. I’ve joined #ARES and taken the course, am presently taking Red Cross Disaster Services Technology (DST) webinars, and hope to take a CERT class in my hometown County this summer so when there is next a call for trained and qualified volunteer hams, I’ll be able to answer the door and step up. And when I do, I’ll try to look and act professional and leave a good impression on how wonderful we hams can be with everyone I come in contact with. I am looking forward to the opportunity to do good deeds, utilize my hobby in a publicly useful way, and, for the adventure of it. I hope to have an interesting story for you in the future.
Signing off for now, de k4wk, www.hamdon.com. Thanks for listening; you’re in the log.