W7LR - Robert E. 'Bob' Leo W7LR

Robert E. 'Bob' Leo
Bozeman, MT

QCWA # 11437
Chapter 104

I am now 95 but still an active ham. Downsizing some antennas on our 5 acre lot.

Worked all countries, Navy 5 years, operated NPG and copied JA code during battle of Midway.

Rx array now 4 square in west field. two 80 foot towers for WARC LP TH7 6M beams. tx antennas in east field, one 90 foot vertical for 160 80 40, one 64 foot vertical for 30m.

W7LR started as an swl in 1933 by building a receiver from an article by Hugo Gernsback. It had a coil wound on an oatmeal box, used pieces of tin can for tuning capacitor, and a type 30 tube. Licensed in 1937 as W6PBV. WW II for five years in U S Navy as RM1C radioman and later as LtCmdr. Operator at NPG and later in radio intelligence work. In 1948 went to East Africa with the Hallicrafter Expedition, operating VQ3HGE VQ4EHG and VQ5GHE. Climbed Mt Kilimanjaro and spent nearly a year in that area.See QST Dec 1993 for the story of that dxpedition. Next went on Norwegian tanker to Persian Gulf. Worked for Arabian Am Oil Co for two years in HZA and in the Great Arabian Desert.Visiting operator at HZ1AB. Also operated MP4BAL on Bahrein Island during that period. Back to W6 land, then Arizona, then Montana. Now W7LR. Was in Thailand 1963 to 1965 as HS1L, and helped found the Radio Amateur Society of Thailand (RAST). While in Thailand travelled to many SE Asian countries, including Angkor Wat in Cambodia. Age 94 for some of this message, now 95. and retired from teaching EE at Montana State Univ. EE degrees from Cal Tech and Stanford. Registered Professional Engineer in MT & CA. EE Consultant on electrical accidents and fires. After retirement from the University in 1981, we have travelled to many countries and visited a few hams there.

Worked all countries on cw except P5 on SSB. Active on 160 meters, with 249 countries on topband. Some 160m dx: IS0/YO3RA KH8SI A61AJ 9V1PC XR0X PW0T 5U1A VP6BR T77C VP6DX T93J 4O3A V8FWP 5L2MS J5UAR TO5DX ER4ER EY8MM VP8/LZ1UQ 9J2BO XT2C LZ2JE 5A7A HB0/T94JJ OJ0B A25/DL7DF 3V8DLH CP4BT TR8CA A45XR TZ6CW 9G5TF 5B4AGC FT5XO 5V7A JT/K4ZW TX0C ZD7K 4W/N6FF XZ0A S92SS 3DA0CA UX0ZZ 9M0C 3XY7C 9L1AB ZP6CW PZ5UE 3Y0PI 9H1ZA 5T5SN JD1YBJ K5D 5N7M Z36W XU7ACY HS0ZEE 9Q TJ PJ4 PJ7 HK0 PT0S XW0YJY FT5ZM K1N

The 160m TX antennas: 90' aluminum irrigation pipe vertical, and a 30m vertical. RX antennas for 160are in the pasture in the winter when the horses are gone. Earlier the farmer across the road keeps his horses there, and he plows us out in the winter when we are snowed in. One Beverage is 500' for South Africa or reverse. There are also two K7TJR arrays of four 20' verticals spaced at the corners of 70'x320' rectangular areas. One is aimed at Europe or reverse. It is outstanding when signals come from Europe over the pole and the aurora level is low. The other array is for Asia and SA. There are two 80 foot towers, for HF, WARC bands, and 6 meters.

XYL: Cobi from The Netherlands. She was there through WWII and a member of the Dutch underground. Her parents took into their home, downed American airmen.

We were married in Florence, Italy in October 1949. Two children, four grandchildren, and three greatgrandchildren.

We live in Bozeman Montana on five acres at an elevation of one mile - one acre for the tx antenna field, and one acre for the rx antenna field. The rest are big trees, a creek, big gardens and flowers, and views of the nearby forest and mountains to the south that reach a height of 11,000 feet.

Another adventure is in CQ May 2002, my story of "The Vovage of Discovery" about the canoe trip of some of our Bozeman MT ham club members down part of the Missouri River along some of the route of Lewis and Clark some 200 years earlier. Write ham stories, one about Navy copy of JA code msgs during battle of Midway. Also CQ magazine stories of qsl card excanges after 63 years for my VQ3 qso with VQ8AD; and a story of qso conacts with a lady ham 105 years old (young). now a SK at age 107.

Here is some US history, relative to that canoe story. The Louisiana Purchase from France in 1803 expanded the US between the MS river and the headwaters of the MO river, in MT. West of that to the Pacific Ocean was unknown territory, occupied by Indian tribes and some fur trappers. President Jefferson authorized Lewis and Clark for an expedition to explore this territory and to see if there were a water route west. They went by boat, foot and horseback for 3 years and 8000 miles, from May 1804 to Sept 1806, to and from St. Louis, MO. Aided by the Indian woman and guide, Sacajewa,they reached the Pacific Ocean in November 1805. Their trip and our ham club trip along the MO river in MT were each called the Voyage of Discovery.This area has hardly changed in the intervening 200 years.

Recently a more complete story of my operation from the 1948 Hallicrafter Dxpedition to British East Africa, Kenya, Tanganyika and Uganda (VQ4,3 and 5) has been written by PA0ABM based on material that Bill W0LHS (SK) and I have sent him. It may be found on the web page: http://www.qsl.net/pa0abm/ghe/00ghe.htm Also presented recently at Visalia by my friend N6TR.

Some life stories - first radio at age 12, Navy 5 years, copied JA code during battle of Midway, EE degrees from CalTech and Stanford, Registered PE in CA and MT, legal consultant on 200 EE cases, EE Prof 20 years in MT, GE computer facility, 2 years in Saudi Arabia, Stanford research director in Thailand and helped form RAST (Radio Amateur Society in Thailand),Naval Reserve LtCmdr and flew space available on airforce planes, Cobi and I travelled for 20 years to places like Cambodia, Egypt, Greece, Australia, Norway, Germany, and many countries, now retired for family and W7LR.

QSLs: I answer all cards received, swl or ham, bureau or direct. I can do LOTW if necessary. I initiate a QSL only for a new country on 160, or for a new band/mode on other bands. I don't need green stamps nor IRCs, just an envelope with your address. I do dxing and rag chewing, and help hams needing MT.

Rev: W7LR -Nov 12th 2016.

W7LR - Robert E. 'Bob' Leo

W7LR - Robert E. 'Bob' Leo

W7LR - Robert E. 'Bob' Leo

W7LR - Robert E. 'Bob' Leo

W7LR - Robert E. 'Bob' Leo

W7LR - Robert E. 'Bob' Leo

W7LR - Robert E. 'Bob' Leo

W7LR - Robert E. 'Bob' Leo

March 20, 2021