Tribute to Cliff Corne, Jr. - K9EAB

Cliff Corne, Jr. K9EAB was probably the most courage person of anyone we've read about, a polio victim in 1949 at age 9. Here is Cliff confined to his iron lung. He had earned over 1100 awards and USA-CA number 1, the first to work all USA counties. He expired in 1969.


Email from Rod K5BGB (forwarded from W8SU):
I occasionally take a look at K8CX’s Web site and when I did this morning, man oh man, I spotted K9EAB that you submitted and I just had to drop you a note.

Butch, as I knew him, and I were very close friends over many, many years before he became an SK. I first met Butch when he and Ramsey, VK4AB, had almost daily QSOs on 20 SSB. Although I was and still am a cw guy, I’d sit and listen to those two guys carry on for hours at a time. It finally got the best of me and I dusted off my D104 mic and the three of us then began having weekly skeds. Butch and I also had frequent cw QSOs over the years because we chased dx and constantly tried to outdo each other. Listening to his cw, you’d have never guessed he was in an iron lung and even more so, that he could only move one finger of his left hand I seem to recall. His dad mounted a Vibroplex paddle on a piece of wood and attached it to the iron lung so that Butch could “wiggle” his one finger. No kidding, Butch could easily send and receive 25 wpm! He was an amazing person.

Although my Mom and Dad couldn’t afford to pay my way in those years, I saved up enough $ to pay for a roundtrip Greyhound bus ride to St. Louis one summer. Butch’s Dad picked me up in St. Louis and took me back to Peoria where I spent several fantastic days with Butch and his kind family. Gosh, I think I was still in high school at the time and I assure, that’s a long time ago. ;-)

As you can easily tell, seeing that K9EAB photo brought back some really great memories for me. Thanks so very much for sharing it with others who might check out the K8CX Web page.

BTW, I’m still active almost daily on 80/40/30 cw. I’ve kind of made a full circle from my novice days in 1955 in that I am once more a low-profile guy with a little K2, small solid state amp that gives me 45 W, and a stealth G5RV at 33 ft. I’m mostly a QRPer but the 45-W amp does help if the other guy can’t pull me out of the noise with my 5 watts.

Hope to maybe run across you on the bands some day. Thanks once more for submitting that K9EAB photo . . .
Licensed June 1955

Tribute courtesy of W8SU
QSL Card from the estate of W2UNS 1965 QSO
Email courtesy of K5BGB

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