My Four Year Anniversary

Today, 14 August marks my 4th year as a licensed amateur radio operator.  I’ve done a lot in the hobby since getting my ticket and I look forward to each and every anniversary of not only having fun but also learning. 


As I have shared many times, amateur radio has always been in my life.  Yes, this is me as a young child (circa 1969-70) sitting down and pretending to talk on my Uncle’s ham station.  During the early 80’s I tried very hard to learn CW while fitting everything else in that a young teenage boy does in those years.  Simply put…I failed!  Between school, work, cars and girls….I failed to do what many have done.  Of course what I realize now (some 40 years after that photo was made) that the issues I experienced in trying to learn CW as a teenager is a lot of what I’m going through with earning my extra ticket.  I get serious about it (as I am now) and life throws me a curve and I have to shift priorities and by the time I get back around I’ve forgotten more of what I learned.  I’ve recently picked up the studies and my focus to finish this time is very strong.

Like I said, I’ve been licensed 4 years today and during this time, I’ve done a lot in the hobby and arguably perhaps too much at times, as I’ve often had to admit to myself that I was trying to catch up for lost time.  Regardless, I have very few regrets as I’ve always tried to follow the guidelines spelled out in the Radio Amateur’s Code and I have the most supportive wife who understands the importance of hobbies and the need to serve our communities. 

While one might not believe an adult can “grow and develop” any further just from a hobby, they probably don’t know anything about amateur radio.  Regardless if it is discovering a new mode, learning  something you didn’t know or working a new DX station, the hobby has given back to me in so many ways. 

I’ve met so many incredible people through this hobby, and many of you I consider very dear friends.  While some of you I’ve never met face to face, the help you’ve given me along with the knowledge we’ve shared and the friendship you’ve shown is perhaps my biggest accomplishment in the hobby.

My goals for the future are to strive to continue to learn, have fun and continue to build the friendships I have today and develop brand new ones along the way.  I know of no other hobby which opens the doors, knocks down the walls and creates friendships across nations like amateur radio.  I’m truly proud to be a part of this incredible fraternity of nation builders.

Thank you for allowing me to share my fourth year anniversary with all of you. 

73 de KD0BIK

Jerry Taylor, KD0BIK, is a regular contributor to and writes from Colorado, USA. He is the host of the Practical Amateur Radio Podcast. Contact him at [email protected].

2 Responses to “My Four Year Anniversary”

  • Fred W0FMS:

    Don’t Fret.. I just celebrated my 25th year of being licensed– but I too have had a serious of disasters keeping me QRT for several months. It’s just the way life works..

    I too never became really proficient with CW and even after 25 years, it’s on the “bucket list” of to do before I die.

    Just have fun with ham radio, try a lot of different aspects of it and don’t sweat the small stuff.

    As John Lennon was quoted saying: “Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans.”

    Put your life and family first and then Amateur Radio will fit in it’s proper place in your life.

    Personally, I find amateur radio not to be about DXing, or Awards, Contests or even Public Service. It’s an incredible learning opportunity that has so many facets one cannot possibly cover all of them in time or $$$ in a lifetime.

    Hopefully I’ll catch you on bands. 73… Fred W0FMS

  • John Yochom KB3KEM:

    Hi. I enjoyed reading about your interest in Ham radio. Your experiences parallel mine many ways. I have a picture on my wall showing me at around age 12 pretending to use a ham station. Actually it was listening to SW on an Hallicrafter S38 that my uncle gave me. Code was a block for me and I never got it. Now I got my general ticket this past spring (2011) after using my Tech ticket (2003)for 8 years.
    I had 4 high school friends that are Hams and I hung out with them as they were very active in Ham operation. In 2004, at age 60 and after a by-pass operation I made a bucket list also. Besides Ham radio, I bought a sailboat and a used SUV. Now my summer months are taken with boating and my winter months with ham radio. At age 67, Im hoping for many more years to enjoy Ham radio. Next step is to get some HF gear and and get on 20 & 40 m. Thanks for sharing your journey with us and nay you have many more enjoyable years on the air.

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