On The Cover: February 2008

On the Cover

Lots of people try to get their names up in lights, but Fred Serota, K3BHX, of Blue Bell, Pennsylvania, managed to get ham radio’s name up in lights—literally. As ARRL State Government Liaison for Eastern Pennsylvania, several years ago Fred helped get the state’s governor to declare June as Amateur Radio Month in Pennsylvania, and then got the local electric company to use the public service

billboard on top of its office tower in Philadelphia to flash a message reading, “Ham Radio Operators Emergency Communications In Time Of Need” (see photo, September 2005 CQ, p. 52).

A pediatrician in the Philadelphia suburbs, Fred’s main ham radio interest is DXing. His main radio is an ICOM IC-7800, with an older IC-781 as backup. He’s also got an Elecraft K2 QRP rig and the D-Star capable IC-2820 for 2 meters and 440 MHz. But Fred says his favorite places to be are the 40- and 20-meter CW bands, working DX the old-fashioned way.

A ham for the past 50 years, Fred says he got his start by going to work with his dad, who worked at WIP radio in Philadelphia in the 1950s. Fred hung around with the engineers, several of whom were hams. One of them gave him his license exam, and then helped him put up an antenna and get on the air. The antenna you see on our cover (not the same one) is a Moseley Pro 40-10-meter beam at 40 feet on his US Tower crankup. Fred’s other main ham interest right now is working with some fellow University of Pennsylvania alumni to get ham radio active again at the college. (Cover photo by Larry Mulvehill, WB2ZP)

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