Tribute to Lee R. Wical KH6BZF
1934 - May 2, 2014
Past SCM, DXer, Propagation
Forecaster Lee Wical, KH6BZF, known to his friends as KH6 Bloomin
Zipper Flipper was a member of A-1 Operators Club, Army Signal
Corps, ARRL Charter Life, ARRL Diamond Club, ARRL DXCC Honor,
ARRL Propagation Bulletin, arrl vec, boy scouts, broadcast
stations, charter member, electrical engineering, life member,
morse code, state mars director, W5YI Volunteer Examiner.
Lee C. Wical, KH6BZF, of Kaneohe, Hawaii was born in Sharon, Pennsylvania, USA and grew up in Mentor, Ohio.He died May 2 after a period of declining health. He was 79 and had not been active on the air in recent years. Growing up in Ohio, Wical became interested in radio after getting an old Atwater-Kent from his grandfather in 1938, becoming a BCL and, later, an SWL. His uncle and a cousin both were hams. His early aspirations were to become a minor league baseball player, but he opted eventually for a career in electrical engineering.
He developed an interest in AM broadcast SWLing, during the 1930s', 40's and 50's. Lee learned Morse Code while in the Cub Scouts. He was drafted into the US Army during the Korean War where, due to his Morse knowledge, the Signal Corps apparently wanted him - he was sent to the US Army's Signal School. In 1955 he got his ham novice license, testing with KH6WW on Maui. Lee says the "DX bug" hit him hard. He passed his general class test in Cleveland Ohio in about 1960. While attending college on the GI Bill, he got his first class FCC Radiotelephone License and went to work for broadcast stations in Ohio. He also acquired commercial licenses and worked at broadcast stations WMNI and WBNS in Columbus, Ohio.
After graduation he moved to Hawaii and was employed in various engineering positions before signing on with the federal government for 36 years. Following that, he resumed his career at AT&T and Lucent Technologies, working around the world before finally retiring in 1997.
From 1962 until 1972, Wical served as ARRL Section Communications Manager (now SM) for Hawaii. He also was a state MARS director. Wical was an ARRL VEC and W5YI volunteer examiner to put something back into radio, which gave me a great vocation and a great hobby, as he explained. He was an ARRL Charter Life Member as well as a life member of the QCWA and of AMSAT. He was a charter member and co-founder of the Honolulu DX Club and on the clubs Board of Directors.
Wical had attained the ARRL DXCC Honor Roll with 358 entities confirmed. He belonged to the A-1 Operators Club and ARRLs Old Timers Club. He edited and published the KH6BZF Reports HF propagation forecast and occasionally prepared the ARRL Propagation Bulletin for W1AW.
An ARRL Diamond Club member, Wical also belonged to the ARRL Legacy Circle and had included the ARRL in his estate.
NN5T, KH6BZF, K1TTT
Dayton Hamvention 2010
Info courtesy of K2WR, AH7C,
QSL from the estate of W2KKT
Photo courtesy of K8CX