Richard L. Fuller
Rapid City, SD
QCWA # 32890
I was originally licensed in 1978 as N5AOU while living in Houston, TX. I went down to the FCC office with the intention of taking the 5 wpm code test and the Technician/General written test. The examiner talked me into trying the 13 wpm as it was administered first and if I didn't pass I could take the 5 wpm test. I passed the 13 wpm test as well as the written test so, needless to say, I was pretty excited! I went home and started studying the material for the Advanced license and went down 2 weeks later and passed it. I was then issued the call KB5FN. A few months after that I passed the 20 wpm test as well as the Extra written test but elected to keep my Advanced class call.
I graduated from the University of Houston College of Pharmacy in 1976 after serving in the U.S. Army from '70-'73 as a medic which included a tour in Viet Nam, '71-'72. I was assigned to HHC, 1st Bn/20th Inf, 11th LIB, 23rd Infantry Division (Americal) and attached to B company as a combat medic. After the Americal was disbanded in Oct. '71 I was sent to the 3rd Surgical Hospital (Mobile Army) down in the Mekong delta near Can Tho. After Viet Nam I was stationed at a Nike Hercules missile base outside of Gaithersburg, MD and was there until discharge in May '73.
While in pharmacy school I joined an Army Reserve unit and quickly rose through the ranks making Sergeant First Class, E-7, before I had 6 years time in service. After graduation I worked at the VA hospital in Houston and applied for a direct commission and had the 'butter bar' of the 2nd Lieutenant pinned on in January '78. I was a Major by the time of the first gulf war and was mobilized and sent to Fort Polk, LA to replace an active duty pharmacy officer that was deployed to Saudi Arabia.
In '93 I resigned my Army Reserve commission and accepted a commission as a Lieutenant Commander in the U.S. Public Health Service and my wife was commissioned as a LTJG (Physician Assistant). We were detailed to the Federal Bureau of Prisons and worked at prisons in Colorado, Minnesota, California and finally Louisiana. In 2005 we transferred to the Indian Health Service and got stationed on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in South Dakota. My wife retired as a LCDR in Jan. 2008 and I retired as a Captain, O-6, in July 2009 with a total of 39 years of federal service.
I hope to get up 50 feet of Rohn tower up this spring with a 4-element M2 triband beam (on a Hazer, I have no desire to climb towers anymore), a project that was not practical when moving around so much on active duty. I hope to catch you on the air!
September 22, 2015