wythall radio club

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John G4OJL SK Remembered

May 04, 2020 By: Chris G3YHF Category: Club

Long-time Wythall Radio Club member John Bevan G4OJL recently became a silent key.
John joined the club in 2012 after a chance meeting with David G0ICJ. His initial interest was to join in with the ongoing morse class.
Although John was always associated with contacts on the key, he’d told me that after he’d passed the compulsory morse test in the 1980s he had not used it on air and didn’t like the mode. Indeed for a while he gave up the hobby completely and moved onto other pursuits.  Thanks to Chris G0EYO finding John’s details in an old callbook, John was able to get his original G4OJL callsign reissued.
John continued with the morse class, and by his own admission found it quite tough going and requiring lots of practice at home and at the club. He said that one Friday night at the club shack with Phil 2E0WTH and others, he heard Barry M0DGQ calling CQ on 80 metres without any station replying to him, so he very cautiously replied. This was his very first ever CW contact. 
After that John went from strength to strength, and was soon very comfortable on the key. His morse progression resulted in him being the second recipient of the Lew Williams Shield in 2013 (see photo, being presented by Lee G0MTN).
After that, despite being one of our more senior members in age, John continued to help out with the morse class, assisting with practical assessments with our training team.  He was an active participant in Club events, including Plug and Play (photo left, with Chris G7DDN) bringing some interesting antennas to try, at field days and other operating events, the Fun Run, and the Hamfest.
Club members recall him always being willing to answer a CW CQ, and being a dab hand at the ‘squeeze’ technique on a paddle key.
He entered almost all of the club contests, often sticking to CW only, but was also to be often found on FM for a local natter.  He also embraced DSTAR and recorded his activity on the Club’s ‘check-in’ website.
I’m glad that as a club we were able to help rekindle his interest in the hobby and facilitated several friendships with like minded people who enjoyed the same parts of the hobby as he did (photo left, with Les G0HOR and Alf G1MJO). 
You’ll be missed John – rest in peace.