Ben Haman, Jr, WB6GBS is the voice of the radio club each morning on the drive time net from 7:30 to 8:00 AM.
The morning net was cohosted by Ben and Duane Lutz, KI6QEL for several years til Duane’s retirement earlier last fall.
Ben was born in Jasper, Florida, but notes that he has lived “all over” until settling in Fresno in 1962.
He was first licensed in 1955 in Phoenix, Arizona when he was taking electronics in High school. His father was his inspiration for Ham Radio when he took an electronics correspondence course on the GI bill from the Nation Radio Institute where he built a short wave receiver and the two of them listened to broadcasts and amateur radio stations from around the world.
In High School he took an electronics course and passed his novice license with the call, WN7YHJ. He upgraded to conditional class then general. Even Phoenix in those days just got a visit from the FCC office in Los Angeles four times a year.
The family moved to Pima, Arizona where his father was a minister and then back to Phoenix where Ben attended Phoenix Technical.
He was in the Air Force from 1957 to 1962 and trained in microwave, Radar and general communication and served in Mississippi, Illinois, Texas and three years in Scotland,
where he admits his work was classified.
He attended Arizona State University in Tempe and at the same time became licensed as a First Class RadioTelephone.
Once in Fresno, he began a 31 year career working for the telephone company and retired in 1999.
He has kept busy since then. His previous world travel has continued. He is a member of the California Southern Baptist Disaster Relief and particularly the communication unit. He told me he was involved in other aspects of disaster relief besides radio, though, including, food and shelter provision, clearing mud and trees as part of the chain-saw team and as a 31 year telephone company man, restoring land communication to affected areas. He deploys two to three times a year.
In this capacity and he has participated in Disaster Relief efforts in Haiti, Texas, Vermont, South Dakota among otheres and most recently on the east coast for the Hurricane Sandy disaster.
His present call was issued in 1970 and he holds an Amateur Extra class license.
His lovely wife, Judy has an amateur radio license with the call letters, KF6DSR, together they have four kids and lots of grandchildren.
His favorite aspects of ham radio, if that wasn’t already evident, is disaster relief communication, but he also is highly involved in teaching radio and this month will be instructing in an Amateur Extra license class at the Citadel in downtown Fresno for the ARES/RACES group.
By: Joe Capell, W0PJD