In memory of our
Clinton M. Kerrison - K5ZR (ex-WB5CKM)
January 18, 1949 -
May 30, 1977
Clinton M. Kerrison was " ahead of his time" on being an
electronic builder and tinkerer, building highly accurate
frequency counters in the 70's and being professionally involved in avionics in
the Ft. Hood area.
K5ZR, David Evans - K5SOR, someone else & I operated 160 meter contests
from Clint's home near Copperas Cove, Texas. K5SOR, WBØYEA, WA5LYN, K5ZR
and I operated from the college's TV
transmitter site there with 160 meter dipoles up about 220 feet! I have a photo of
that here somewhere. I got to climb
the 1000' (up to 220 feet or so) TV tower Sunday morning to take the dipoles
remember frost on the tower rungs and seeing Ft. Hood Army helicopters flying
below me as I did this, as the base of the tower was on a high ridge/hill just
south of Stillhouse Hollow Lake just South of the Bell County Expo Center.
We used one of the very first " automatic CQ " keyers, an electro- mechanical
nightmare consisting of a variable speed geared down DC motor with a round disc
of semi-rigid cardboard attached to the shaft, with notches cut out along the
edge, with the CW for whatever contest you were in at the time, that then keyed
a photo-interrupter and keyed a relay that keyed the 160 meter
transmitter. It was rack mounted in a short 19 inch rack. A pot slowed or sped
up the code speed.
Clint died at Scott & White hospital at Temple, the big hospital on the right
you pass going to the Belton Hamfest, I believe of
pneumonia or complications of it.
Clint stumbled onto a hill country rancher with a large ranch and lots of cattle
and an old vacant farm/ranch house on it, and the rancher let Clint and his bride live there
free so that he could have someone to watch his cattle and the back gate to his
At the 160 meter operation at Clint's home, we used balloon supported 1/4 wave
wire verticals with bunches of radials made of cheap throw-away phosphor-bronze
wire. Being in avionics, Clint had access to the large weather balloons, and we
went to a Target or K-Mart store near Ft. Hood and talked the manager into letting us
fill the weather balloons up with his helium bottle that he
sold balloons to the kids ( with an attached stupid looking clown head on
it ) for 50 cents a balloon. This guy had to have lost money on us!
We couldn't get the balloons out of the front door, and ended up taking the
helium bottle out in the parking lot, and filling them there with droves of
kiddies wanting to buy one of the big balloons. Hi! I had a 1972 Ford
pick-up with a camper cover on it, and we transported the several helium filled
balloons back to Clint's that way.
Another TDXS friend of Clint and Dave's was Tom Jakubec - N5ZR who was
friends with Clint and got a similar callsign, like his friend. Tom was a U.S.
Army helicopter pilot in training at the time at Ft. Hood.
Sam Neal - N5AF
July 14, 2004
Photo taken 1973, courtesy of David Evans - W5SOR
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