Club History

The Pride of the Florida Panhandle

Milton ARC est. 1983


D
ocuments suggest that earlier local Amateur Club activities had in fact took place. However, for one reason or another these attempts were short-lived or inadequately documented. There is presently on file an updated Milton Amateur Radio Club roster of 29 call signs presumably dating from early 1982. All of the people listed below are also on this roster. Mr. Ron Munion, KF4RV, kept excellent on-going records of all Club activities from that initial meeting described below. Because of the clarity of these records and the preservation thereof, the Milton Amateur Radio Club will be known for all purposes, legal or otherwise, to have begun on Tuesday, August 2, 1983.


August 2, 1983 _____________________________________________
On this date, a group of local Amateurs formed the Milton Amateur Radio Club. The following is a transcript of the minutes from their first meeting: “Special meeting August 2, 1983, This meeting was called to see if anyone was interested in forming a new Amateur Radio Club. Personnel present were Charles Massengale, Chip Gorum, Pete Dunn, Larry Carpenter, Ross
Russell, Father Tom Lorigan, Richard Lewis, Ron Munion, Mike McCort, Robert Olson and Charles Swick. Massengale proposed a new Amateur Radio Club, membership and meeting place. All present were in agreement for forming a new Amateur Club. Massengale proposed Charles Swick be President until the election of new officers. All present agreed. It was proposed the new club be called ‘Milton Amateur Club’ and that the club be affiliated with ARRL. All present agreed. It was proposed Ron Munion be secretary & treasurer until the election of officers, all present agreed. It was proposed we adjourn until next meeting when prospective members will be notified, all present agreed. The meetings were held at McCrary’s Family Restaurant. Annual dues were set at $1.00 per person.

September 1, 1983 ___________________________________________
Richard Bower, N4ICV, elected Vice president. The original Club Constitution was adopted. The Club started an ARES net on the 145.49 repeater


October 20, 1983 ____________________________________________
Hugh Armstrong, NT4Z joined Club.


November 17, 1983 ___________________________________________
Ron Maddox, KF4LR; Frank Williams, KE4OC; Walter Yarbrough, WA4TFR;
Jim & Gwen Heller, NJ4I & KA4OQE; Mac McCleery, N4EHX; and Dennis Dix, WD4LTC all joined the Club. ARRL Charter adopted.


January 1984_____________________________________________________________
1984 Officers are :
Charles Swick, WT4O, elected President
Hugh Armstrong, NT4Z, elected Vice President
Ron Munion, KF4RV, elected Secretary & Treasurer
Tony Miller and Al Homan, KF4XE, joined the Club.


April 1984________________________________________________________________
Hugh Armstrong, NT4Z, received a letter of appreciation in the Club’s behalf. This was for the Club providing communications service for the March 19 Blackwater Fun Run


July 1984_________________________________________________________________
Al Pelletier, N4JXU joined Club


January 1985______________________________________________________________
1985 Officers are:
Charles Swick, WT4O, President
Sue Cooey, K4BDF, Vice President
Ron Munion, KF4RV, Sec/Tres


January 1986______________________________________________________________
1986 Officers are :
Charles Swick, WT4O, President
Sue Cooey, K4BDF, Vice President
Ron Munion, KF4RV, Sec/Tres


February 1986_____________________________________________________________
145.49 Repeater Frequency pair properly registered.


January 1987______________________________________________________________
1987 Officers are:
Charles Swick, WT4O, President
Sue Cooey, K4BDF, Vice President
Ron Munion, KF4RV, Sec/Tres


March 19, 1987____________________________________________________________
John A. (Tony) Snow, K4OZL, joined the Club.


January 1988______________________________________________________________
1988 Officers are:
Mac McCleery, N4EHK, President
Vicki Holman, N4MAJ, Vice President
Ron Munion, KF4RV, Sec/Tres


March 1988________________________________________________________________
Walter Yarbrough, WA4TFR, appointed as Chairperson of the Repeater Auto Patch operation.


April 21, 1988_______________________________________________________________
Al Homan, AA4BT, Tried to change meeting place from Mc Crary’s restaurant. The motion didn’t make it. Two votes for, Two against. Motion killed.


September 15, 1988_________________________________________________________
Annual Club dues changed from $1.00 to $10.00 per person and $15.00 per Family. Reason for increase was for support and repair of the 145.49 repeater, autopatch and Club operations.


January 19, 1989_____________________________________________________________
1989 Officers are :
Gordon McCleery, N4EHX, President
Rachel McCleery, KB4SWF, Vice President
Walter Yarbrough, WA4TFR, Treasurer
Ron Munion, KF4RV, Secretary

February 15, 1990_________________________________________________________
With no nominations received for the 1990 Officers, Ron Munion, KF4RV, agreed to accept the offices of President and Secretary. All other offices remained vacant. Ron further stated in the minutes that since interest in Club meetings was failing and due to a poor attendance record, Further meetings would only be called when he felt that information needed to be put out. All ten members in attendance agreed.


February 1990 until February 1992 No Records found.


February 18, 1992_________________________________________________________
A special meeting was called to order by Walter Yarbrough. The Club had all but dissolved. Walter reorganized and rejuvenated the Amateur Radio Club.
1992 Officers are:
Walter Yarbrough, WA4TFR, President
H.R. ‘Blake’ Blakeney, AA4BM, Vice President
Ross Russell, WA4RQN, Sec/Tres

February 27, 1992___________________________________________________________
Steve Richbourg, WB4FAQ (KO4TT), voted in as a Club Member.


March 1992__________________________________________________________________
Dues upped to $15.00 per person to pay for a private telephone line on the 145.49 phone patch.


June 27-28, 1992_____________________________________________________________
The Milton Amateur Radio Club set up a Field Day station at the River walk Gazebo. A Pensacola News Journal clipping depicted Glenn Goll, KD4QBG and Hugh Armstrong, NT4Z operating the radio with Bill Lyle, KC4ZUG; Marv Richburg, KA0PKJ; Walt Yarbrough, WA4TFR and Chip Gorum, WB4EPR, looking on. Of particular note was the fact that our station had learned of an earthquake in California as it was happening.


October 15, 1992____________________________________________________________
A majority vote of Club Members OK’d a meeting location change. The move was from Mc Crary’s Family restaurant to the Milton Civic Center on Munson Highway. Meetings scheduled for 7:45 p.m. the second Monday of each month.


January 1993 ____________________________________________________
1993 Officers are :
Richard Bower, N4ICV, President
Hugh Armstrong, NT4Z, Vice President
Bill Lyle, KC4ZUG, Secretary
Hanalore ‘Lori’ Richbourg, WD0EFC, Treasurer


February 8, 1993____________________________________________________________
The Club Secretary, Bill Lyle, drafted a letter bestowing lifetime Club Membership for Charles Massengale, AA4PT, for his donation of time & equipment toward the operation of the Club and the 145.49 repeater.

April 3, 1993 ____________________________________________________
The Club assisted with the Riverwalk Fine Arts Show. Randal Bradshaw, KD4RSX, manned a two-meter station at the South Riverwalk Gazebo and maintained communication with Walter Yarbrough, WA4TFR, aboard the Coast Guard Cutter Point Lobos as it transited from Pensacola up the Blackwater River to Milton’s Riverwalk Arts Festival. Randall tracked the Cutter’s position on a large map so the public could follow the ship’s progress.


May 11, 1993________________________________________________________________
Walter Yarbrough, WA4TFR, and Chip Gorum, WB4EPR, entertained patients at the Santa Rosa Convalescent Center. Walter and Chip set up a demonstration station consisting of a portable HF transceiver and a 2 meter rig. Several stations were contacted via the Club’s repeater.


June 7, 1993_________________________________________________________________
The Milton Amateur Radio Club provided communications services for the ‘Tour de Cure’, a day long series of bicycle endurance races sponsored by the American Diabetes Association. Club members covered seven check points along the course. Club members particularly active in this event were: Hugh Armstrong, NT4Z;H.R. Blakeney, AA4BM; Richard Bowyer, N4ICV; Chip Gorum, WB4EPR; Al Homan, AA4BT; Vici Homan, N4MAJ, Steve Richbourg, WB4FAQ with Richard Wonson, AC4KA and Walter Yarborough, WA4TFR acting as Net Control.


June 14, 1993________________________________________________________________
Randal Bradshaw, KD4RSX, began regular monthly distribution of the Club’s Newsletter.


July 10 & 11, 1993____________________________________________________________
Randal Bradshaw, KD4RSX; Bob Tietze, KD4CET; Al Homan, AA4BT; Hugh Armstrong, NT4Z; Walter Yarbrough, WA4TFR; and Marvin Richburg, KA0PKJ; set up a Special Event Station atWhiting Field in support of the 50th Anniversary Celebration of the opening of Whiting Field. A Pensacola
News Journal clipping authored by Al Homan, AA4BT, depicted the site near the Whiting Officers Club. Thanks to Donnie Sowell, they had the use of a large canopy, without which they would have been inundated by a violent rainstorm that Saturday. Lori Richburg, WD0EFC, photographed the event.


January 1994_______________________________________________________________
1994 Officers are:
Hugh Armstrong, NT4Z, President
Walter Yarbrough, WA4TFR, Vice President
Randal Bradshaw, KD4RSX, Sec/Tres


February 1994______________________________________________________________
The ARES Net shifted from the Pea Ridge AA4PT 145.49 repeater to the Santa Rosa County 146.70 machine.


March 21, 1994___________________________________________________________
Club President, Hugh Armstrong, reinstated ARRL affiliation which was
probably lost during the 1990 / 1992 hiatus.

June 1994_______________________________________________________________
Meeting place moved from Civic Center to the Library due to renovations being made to Civic Center. The Library was only available on the 3rd Monday of the month.


September 1994______________________________________________________________
Jimmy Weatherford, KE4KRJ, Chaired the Tailgater Committee and set up the first MARC Tailgater at Carpenters Park in Milton, Florida. The event turned out to be very successful. The Park was packed with Ham equipment buyers, sellers & traders.


November 19, 1994_______________________________________________________
Tony Snow, K4OZL, Chaired the Foxhunt Committee and set up the first MARC sponsored Foxhunt. Hank Holt, KE4JHD, and Lewis Henderson, KE4SDY, were the winners. Jimmy Weatherford, KE4KRJ,was the Fox. Jimmy had picked an obscure out-of-the-way spot on Old Berryhill Road.


January 1995________________________________________________________________
1995 Officers are:
Bill Couch, WA4MYK, President
Hank Holt, KE4JHD, Vice President
Tony Snow, K4OZL, Sec/Tres
Jimmy Weatherford, KE4KRJ, Activities VP
A majority of Club Members voted to keep meeting place at the Santa Rosa Regional Library. Renovations were completed at the Civic Center, but the changes were not to the Club’s liking.


March 20, 1995_______________________________________________________
The original Club Constitution and bylaws were updated & revised.


May 30, 1995_________________________________________________________
Milton Amateur Radio Club Incorporated.


June 1995____________________________________________________________
Bill Couch, WA4MYK, submitted and received a Club Amateur Call Sign. The new call sign is KF4ATK. Mayor Guy Thompson delivered a proclamation of Amateur Radio Week to the Milton Amateur Radio Club. June 19 through the 25th was declared ‘Amateur Radio Week in Milton ‘. A Press-Gazette clipping depicted the President, Bill Couch WA4MYK, accepting the document while Hugh Armstrong NT4Z, Hamfest Co-chairman; Jeff Ward N4TRY, Hamfest Co-chairman, and Will Meloy, KD4FZB, Civil Defense Department 911 coordinator looked on.


November 20, 1995____________________________________________________
Mark McAnally, KE4QKN, purchased the AA4PT 145.49 repeater from Caldeen Simmons, KE4KRI, and donated same to the Milton Amateur Radio Club.


January 1996______________________________________________________
1996 Officers are:
Walter Yarbrough, WA4TFR, President
Ted Robinson, AE4JJ, Vice President
Jack Diehl, KE4KRK, Sec/Tres
Murray Don Sams, KE4FSC, Activities VP
First Club Newsletter published by Tony Snow, K4OZL.
During 1996 Hugh, NT4Z, and Walter, WA4TFR, requested and received permission from the Milton City Council to relocate the 145.49 repeater to, and erect an antenna on the water tower on Berryhill Road. Johnny Spence, N5MEZ, constructed a small serviceable wooden shack beside the water tower to house the repeater.


July 26-27th 1996_____________________________________________________
The Club sponsored the first ‘Milton Hamfest’ at the Santa Rosa County Auditorium. The main prize was the Icom IC-706. Tommy Weeks, KF4RMI, won the radio. This event turned out to be so successful that it was decided to make this an annual event if possible. Walter Yarbrough, WA4TFR and Don Sams, KE4FSC headed the clubs efforts in this regard.


November 19, 1996__________________________________________________________
Bill Couch, WA4MYK, submitted and received a Vanity Call Sign for the Club, as well as one for himself. Bill’s new call: W4VY and the Club’s new call sign is W4VIY. W4VIY was the call of the Amateur Operator, Gene Latchem of Florence, Alabama who started Tony Snow into Ham Radio way back in the year 1956. W4VIY was one of many alternate Call Signs submitted for possible selection.


January 1997_____________________________________________________
1997 Officers are:
Ted Robinson, KF4T, President
John L. Spence, N5MEZ, Vice President
Ann Clark, WA6YIM, Sec/Tres


July 25-26, 1997______________________________________________________
The Milton Amateur Radio Club Sponsored their Second Annual Hamfest at the Santa Rosa County Auditorium. Once again the event was very successful. Main door prize was the Icom IC-706. Don Sams, KE4FSC, was the Hamfest Committee Chairman.

January 1998____________________________________________________________
1998 Officers are:
Jack Diehl, KE4KRK, President
Warren Jarvis, KB4PMY, Vice President
Robin Marter, KB8ZNN, Sec/Tres (until resignation April 9, 1998 – Ann Clark, WA6YIM, assumed
Sec/Tres for remainder of year.)
Tom Manning, KC4HKO, Activity VP


July 24-25, 1998_________________________________________________
The Milton Amateur Radio Club Sponsored their Third Annual Hamfest at the Santa Rosa County Auditorium. Once again the event was very successful. The main door prize was the Icom IC-706 MK II. Additionally,
Volunteer Examiners provided a testing session for anyone interested in becoming a ham radio operator or upgrading their existing license.

January 1999________________________________________________________
1999 Officers are:
Bill Couch, W4VY, President
Tom Manning, KC4HKO, Vice President
Tony Snow, K4OZL, Sec/Treasurer
Barbara Couch, K4BJC, Sunshine Chairperson
Dean Clark, WB6UKF, Activities VP


March 6, 1999_________________________________________________________
A Club sponsored Tailgater was held at Carpenters Park . The main pavilion and the adjacent parking area was where the action took place. The weather cooperated up until about 13:00 hours when a tornado watch sent everyone home. In spite of threatening weather it turned out to be one of our better Tailgater functions. Chip Gorum, WB4EPR, became a Silent Key.

April 9 through 17, 1999_______________________________________________
The Club was once again asked to participate in the Milton Annual Fair. A static display was set up with ARRL and other Amateur Radio pamphlet handouts were available. Club Volunteers manned the display to answer questions and to actively promote Amateur Radio.

May 1999______________________________________________________
The first Foxhunt of the year took place on Saturday the 22nd. K4OZL was the fox hiding five miles north of Milton at Bob Hinesley’s, KE4WKK, QTH. Bill & Barbara Couch, W4VY & K4BJC, were the first team to find the Fox. Al Pelletier, N4JXU, became a Silent Key. Al bequeathed his entire Amateur Station to the Milton Amateur Radio Club.


June 7, 1999_________________________________________________________________
Hugh Armstrong, NT4Z, the Repeater Committee Chairman, conducted a Repeater Survey to study the quality of Repeater service throughout the county. The methodology consisted of five strategic routes over the county operating into a control station at the repeater site. Mobil stations driving the various routes were Tony Snow, K4OZL; Warren Jarvis, KB4PMY; Chris Nichols, KG4BJN and Ross Russell, WA4RQN. Jack Diehl, KE4KRK, who developed and mapped out the various routes also drove in the survey. At the conclusion of the survey, Hugh Armstrong collected all logs and prepared a professional standard report.


July 23-24, 1999___________________________________________________________ The Milton Amateur Radio Club sponsored their Fourth Annual Milton Hamfest at the Santa Rosa County Auditorium. Volunteer examiners from the Milton and the Pensacola Five Flags club provided testing sessions for all classes of Amateur Radio licenses. Once again the main prize was the Icom IC-706 MKII. Walter Yarbrough, WA4TFR, was the Hamfest Committee Chairman and the entire club was the committee.


September 25, 1999_________________________________________________________
The 2nd Foxhunt of the year was held on this date. W4VY, Bill Couch, was the fox. He hid out in a Pavilion at the Navy Recreation area on Blackwater River . Walter Yarbrough, WA4TFR, and Dean Clark, WB6UKF, were the first to find the Fox. A Club Picnic began immediately after the Foxhunt.


October 18, 1999_____________________________________________________________
President Bill Couch, W4VY, presented to Dean and Ann Clark individually; the Club’s Meritorious Service Award for their exemplary contributions of time, effort and devotion to the Milton Amateur Radio Club. The Clarks permanently left the area in November. They moved to Mesquite, Nevada.


December 20, 1999___________________________________________________________
President Bill Couch, W4VY, presented the Club’s Meritorious Service Award to Walter J. Yarbrough, WA4TFR, in recognition of his sustained exemplary services and personal contributions of time and effort to Amateur Radio Ideals in general and our Club in particular. The presentation was made at the Club’s Annual Christmas dinner at the Country Crossroads Buffet.

January 2000___________________________________________________________
Year 2000 Club Officers are:
Bill Couch, W4VY, President
Jack Diehl, KE4KRK, Vice President
Tony Snow, K4OZL, Sec/Treasurer
Bill Farrall, W0FHJ, Activities VP


January 17, 2000____________________________________________________________
Walter Yarbrough, WA4TFR, presented the motion to change the 145.49 MARC VHF net to 7:00 p.m. each Tuesday night beginning the 25th of January. Members present carried the motion.


June 24 & 25, 2000_________________________________________________________
The Milton Amateur Radio Club and the Serious Hams Amateur Radio Club combined to take part in the year 2000 ARRL Field Day at the Milton River Walk Pavilion on the banks of the Blackwater River.


July 19, 2000_______________________________________________________________
A converted Motorola Micor mobile VHF radio was put on line as the Club’s W4VIY repeater at the Berryhill water tower. The 145.49 Repeater performance improved dramatically. Charles Massengale, AA4PT, modified the commercial radio for repeater operation.


July 21 & 22, 2000_______________________________________________________
The Milton Amateur Radio Club sponsored their Fifth Annual Milton Hamfest at the Santa Rosa County Auditorium. Volunteer examiners from the Milton and the Pensacola Five Flags club provided testing sessions for all classes of Amateur Radio licenses. The main prize was the Icom IC-706 MKII G and won by Charles Swick, WT4O. Walter Yarbrough,WA4TFR, was the Hamfest Committee Chairman and the entire club was the committee.


September 18, 2000____________________________________________________
The Club President, Bill Couch, presented Walter Yarbrough, WA4TFR, with a certificate bestowing Lifetime Club Membership. This was in recognition of Walter’s sustained exemplary support for the Club and for his enhancement of Amateur Radio Principals by example. The certificate was signed by all Members present.


November 4, 2000_______________________________________________________
Club members volunteered to provide communications for the Heritage Trail 5 & 15K Walk/Run marathon sponsored by Whiting Field Morale, Welfare & Recreation department. Hams manned two vehicles, a finish line station and six water & aide stations strategically located along the route. Participating members were: KE4KRK, Jack & Darlene Diehl; N4YGS,
Nelda ‘Cookie’ Strnad; K4BJC, Barbra Couch; KB4PMY, Warren Jarvis; AC4KA & AE4AU, Dick & Polly Wonson; KC4HKJ & KG4JNC, Dave & Liz Lyle; KI4SH & N4SGJ, John & Pearl Cain; WA4TFR, Walter Yarbrough; NT4Z, Hugh Armstrong; K4LO, Phil Wilson and K4OZL, Tony Snow.


December 16, 2000____________________________________________________
On this date William R. Farrall, W0FHJ, became a Silent Key.
Bill had been a Club member for years and was currently our Activities Vice President.


December 18, 2000_______________________________________________________
The Club President, Bill Couch, presented Hugh Armstrong, NT4Z and Warren Jarvis, KB4PMY with a certificate bestowing Lifetime Club Membership. This was in recognition of their unrelenting dynamic support for the highest of amateur radio principals and the Milton Amateur Radio Club in particular. The certificate was signed by all Members present.


January 2001______________________________________________________________
The new year’s Officers are:
Philip Wilson, K4LO, President
Hugh Armstrong, NT4Z, Vice President
Pearl Cain, N4SGJ, Sec/Treasurer
Cindy Robinson, AF4UH, Activities Vice President


January 15, 2001____________________________________________________________
On this date, a new Club position was created. Darlene Diehl accepted the station of Publicity Chairperson. Darlene will be responsible for publishing press releases heralding the Club activities in various local newspapers. She also assumed the Sunshine Committee position from Barbara Couch, K4BJC. Darlene will be busy this year. Hugh Armstrong, NT4Z; Warren Jarvis, KB4PMY; Jack Diehl, KE4KRK and Tony Snow, K4OZL were presented with the Club’s Sustained Exemplary Meritorious Service Award for their continual support and personal contributions to Amateur Radio ideals and to the Milton Amateur Radio Club in particular. The certificates were presented by Bill Couch, W4VY.

February 11, 2001__________________________________________________________
Former Club Member, Ann Clark WA6YIM, became a Silent Key on this date. Ann was living in Mesquite, Nevada with her husband Dean, WB6UKRF.


February 19, 2001____________________________________________________________
Bill Couch, W4VY, former Club President for the last two years, has drafted and handed out many awards to deserving members. On this date Bill was presented with his own Exemplary Meritorious Service Award for exceptional leadership and his continuing adherence to the highest of Amateur Radio principals.


March 31, 2001_______________________________________________________________
The Club provided communication services for the Pace Days Festival 5K run. Hugh Armstrong, NT4Z, covered the Starting line and drove the course as the follow-up chase vehicle. Liz & Dave Lyle, KG4JNC & KC4HKJ, were at the 1 mile marker, Tony Snow, K4OZL was at the 2 mile marker and Phil Wilson, K4LO, handled the Finish Line.


April 28, 2001__________________________________________________________
Long time club member and personal friend, Mr. William S. Couch, W4VY, became a Silent Key on this date. Bill was responsible for obtaining the Club’s first call sign, and subsequently the vanity call of W4VIY. Words cannot express how much Bill will be missed by me, his family and friends. We pray for him fair winds and following seas into eternity.


July 20 & 21, 2001______________________________________________________
The 6th Annual Milton Hamfest was held this Friday & Saturday. Once again it was a tremendous success. All tables were sold and the County Auditorium was packed. Bill Hayden, WY8O, took home the grand prize, a new ICOM 706 MKII G radio. Walter Yarbrough was again the Hamfest Chairman. Wayne Barr, KQ4OW, and Ben Skipper, KS4IE, provided VE testing material and assistance for the Amateur Radio testing session held Saturday. Steve Richbourg, KO4TT, will check all testing material turned in and submit exams to the ARRL VE people. Pearl Cain, N4SGJ, did a fantastic job of drumming up donations from local establishments for the hourly door prizes.


December 17, 2001___________________________________________________________
At the Club’s annual Christmas dinner/monthly meeting, the 2002 Club Officers were announced. Phil Wilson and Pearl Cain both accepted reelection in office. Walter Yarbrough will function as Activities VP. James “Larry” Busbee, W2RM, kindly volunteered to chair the club’s 2002 Field Day activities. Walter will once again chair the Hamfest committee. Tony Snow, K4OZL, was presented his second Meritorious Service Award from the Club for his services as W4VIY Repeater Trustee and Webmaster for the Club’s Web page.


January 2002_________________________________________________________________
Philip Wilson, K4LO, President
Richard McCoy, KK5IN, Vice President
Pearl Cain, N4SGJ, Sec/Treasurer
Walter Yarbrough, WA4TFR, Activities Vice President