W4GD, K4LNM, W4DQH, W4VZU 1950's

I am not the W4GD in the photo, but I used to hang out at his house as a teenager and I knew all of those guys. W4GD was Johnny Watson, K4LNM was Randy Lusk, W4DQH was Claude Bass, W4VZU was Gerry Golightly. All of them were from the Memphis, TN area.

I left Memphis in 1982 and think all of them were still alive. I believe all 4 are Silent Key now. Johnny Watson, W4GD, died in the early 90's I believe.

Johnny W4GD was one of my elmers. When the vanity callsign program went into effect and I found myself living here in Miami with a K5OTI callsign, I put Johnny's call at the top of my list, since it was available.

I discovered that Johnny was not the original holder of W4GD. The call was first issued to a gent in Gainesville, FL back in the 1930's. I think Johnny got it in 1947 or so. I am the 3rd generation of W4GD. I try to live up to Johnny's standard of excellence in DX'ing, but I sure can't build high power amps like he could.

Photo courtesy of John Roberts VK4TL
Info courtesy of John W. Morris, current holder of W4GD