Not realizing how close one of my fellow HAM’S lived to me, I pulled into Denver’s (KE8NVA) driveway after short drive from my home. Denver lives in Clarksburg, WV. Specifically in the Davisson’s Run area, not far from the VA Hospital I frequent. As I step out of my truck, I hear a gentle “morning Chad” coming from the doorway, and turn to see a smiling Denver greeting me from the doorway of the porch.
We shuffle into the house and I’m led to the back of the house to the ham-shack.
I had observed Denver at many of our meetings, and other functions, as being a quiet fellow. Intently listening for some rare piece of knowledge to help him in his journey into ham radio. Once inside though, the shy demeanor faded away and Denver opened up and told me a little of his story.
Denver’s path to ham radio was not a direct one, like many of the members of our club, he first was involved in CB at an early age. His father was an appliance repair technician, repairing tv’s and other home appliances. It wasn’t until later in life that a medical condition changed his life, and put him on a path to ham radio.
As some may know, Denver had an optic stroke in his right eye back in August of 2017. He was actually out on a service call for his then employer Mahindra when it happened. He is now legally blind in the right eye and has poor vision in the left one, but he doesn’t let that stop him from enjoying amateur radio. On a suggestion from his son, Tim, he researched ham radio. Not long after that he tested and passed his technician exam in January of 2020. Not one to sit still, he took and passed both his General and Extra exam in April of the same year. That’s pretty impressive in my book.
Like many of us, Denver enjoys the many different aspects that HAM radio offers. On his Yaesu FTM-3200DR, he enjoys doing 2m nets including our own Thursday night trader’s net every Thursday night at 9:00 pm local. He also likes to hunt Parks on the Air or POTA for short, a very popular and growing segment of the amateur radio hobby. If you’re interested in POTA, our club will be activating on the 23rd of April, at Prickett’s Fort State Park, located in Fairmont. On his Icom 7300, he can regularly be found making contacts around the world using FT8, a very popular digital mode. He also finds time to do a little rag chew on HF, and can be found on the 40m or 80m bands on his homemade fan dipole.
Like all my interviewees, I always ask “What piece of knowledge would you like to pass on to a person new to the hobby.” Denver’s response is “to be persistent when studying for the exams, and to never give up.” From a guy that went from no license, to Extra in a span of four months, that’s sound advice.
Gear: ICOM 7300 (HF)
Ameritron 75 PS
Ameritron AL8 LH
Homemade Fan Dipole 20-40-80 Meter
Thank you for reading, and I hope you enjoyed learning a little more about one of club members, Denver Ferrel. And as always, if you have an interest or question about some of the activities Denver does, feel free to ask him about it.
Stay Radio-Active, and 73’s,
From Ruth Field, WV-28.
This is, K8CMW