I guess if you are a ham and you’re going to die, then age 73 is as good a time as any. Though I suppose 88 would be better. Hi!
Jim Haynie, former WB5JBP, ARRL President Emeritus, would see the humor in that, I think. Humor that lets me think good things about Jim, who was one of my elmers when I was first getting started in Amateur Radio back in Dallas, circa 1982.
Jim passed away this week after some sort of illness. Here is the ARRL announcement of this passing.
I alternately liked and disliked Jim, who worked hard at being a God-like presence in local ham circles and largely succeeded. There is no doubt he passionately cared about Amateur Radio and the community. And particularly about the Skywarn program.
Our differences were typical new ham/old ham conflicts, details of which have faded with time. I was, after all, an ADD, early-20’s radio newskid, who got into hamming in order to be part of the spring and fall tornado chases. He, meanwhile, was the #1 representative of The Establishment (aka Dallas ARC) and I hung with a different crowd.
I last saw him at Dayton about five years ago, and this was the first time in maybe 10 more years. I took the opportunity to thank Jim for all he’d done for me and his service to the ARRL and ham radio generally. I decided that I’d really always liked him. He told me that he swapped his original WB5JBP for vanity W5JBP and later wished he hadn’t.
Jim was a good guy who was licensed for more then 40 years, he was a mover, a smart guy, and from a generation when Amateur Radio was still a big deal. Remembering Jim, today I wish I had been born in 1945 instead of 1959. Jim had lots of ham fun that I missed.
73, Jim, and God bless.