In Memory

Donald Klos

Donald Klos

Date of Death:  October  11, 1986

Age:  45

Residence at time of death:  Orange, California

Circumstances of death:  Don died suddenly of a heart attack.

Occupation:  Computer technology

Don's life:  He remained active in amateur radio throughout his life and was active in the Orange County Amateur Radio Club.  His last radio callsign was W6OOH

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05/27/09 08:21 AM #1    

David Connolly

Don and I met and became friends in our freshman year at HPHS through our common interest in HAM radio. It was very common for HAM operators in an area to administer the Amateur Radio license exams to would-be HAMs, which was particularly useful to younger applicants who didn't drive or who wanted to avoid traveling to downtown Chicago to the FCC location for the exams. Don and I were both helped by the same HAM in Deerfield who gave us our exams. Don's initial HAM call was KN9AXO. I remember Don trying to come up with a phonetic for his call and laughed that all he could think of was "Awful Xylophone Ordeal"!

At that time, I only knew of three HAMs in HPHS besides myself; Don, Eric Engberg and Rick Asher. But because Don and I lived in Deerfield, we met for various HAM events, to operate our radio "rigs" and to build pieces of radio equipment we couldn't afford to buy.

Over our high school years, Don and I worked together at various places in Deerfield. First at the Deerfield Bowling Alley where we set pins. (I never cared much for bowling after that.) Don went on to work there after the automatic pin setting equipment was installed as the on-site repair tech and further as a regular employee in the afternoons and on weekends. We also worked together at the National Tea Co. grocery store stocking shelves.

When I left for college and Don began working as a tech for a company that I think was based in Indiana, we didn't see much of each other and when I moved to NYC after graduation, we lost contact.

Don was a real friend. I never saw him angry or lose his temper. In fact, he was a kind of prankster who laughed often. He was a great person to be around and his passing is a great loss.

Dave Connolly

05/27/09 11:40 AM #2    

Eric Engberg

In those days you had to pass a test where you received Morse code at 13-words per minute in order to qualify for the "General" amateur radio license. I was struggling to get my speed up to that level, and Don agreed to practice with me by sending messages over a practice code oscillator in his "Ham shack." I was doing pretty well for awhile at "reading" his transmissions. But then the dots and dashes he was sending out lurched into incomprehensibility. I just sat there with my pencil frozen against the paper, unable to make out any of the words he was transmitting. I feared I could never pass any test at this rate. Then I noticed that Don had broken out laughing as he tapped the key. He had been transmitting obscure Morse signals for commas, semi-colons and other punctuation marks that only professional telegraphers use. They were signals so arcane that I didn't recognize any of them. It was a HAM radio "gotcha" of the first ilk, something Don was very proficient at accomplishing. At least he didn't call me a "Lid," which was his favorite term of derision for incompetent radio operators.

Eric Engberg

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