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Frank Schwab (W8OK)
May 29, 2003
As a young ham who grew up in the Dayton area, Frank was directly reponsible for the things I most enjoy about Ham radio namely the Hamvention, DXing (founding SWODXA) and several contest expeditions to J6DX. Those who knew him also know this is just the tip of the iceberg. He will be sorely missed.
Contributed by: Steve Miller (N8SM)
I am so saddened to hear of Frank's passing. He was the one that made me feel so comfortable when Bob Drake asked to come to the 1959 Hamvention and talk about my new 128 element 2 meter J Beam antenna. I was 19. There were 600 attendees at the Biltmore Hotel and it was Frank that helped me to feel so comfortable with my presentation.
Every year after, Frank was always there, smiling, joking and making certain that everything was 'OK'. I do beleive that this was one time that the call letters certainly fit the man. Frank will be saddly missed by many. I will miss his greetings of 'Glad you got to see me !' as we left each Hamention. Frank - I am glad I got to know you and you certainly are "OK". The entire ham community will miss you. Love you Frank.
Bob Heil, K9EID
Contributed by: BOB HEIL (K9EID)
I am very sad to hear of the passing of a GREAT amateur radio operator. Frank was the glue that held a lot of us together in the ham radio ranks. Many of us young whipper snappers looked to Frank for guidance, encouragement,leadership and most of all Fellowship. Many a time I have had the pleasure of enjoying lunch with frank, and the thousands of stories and jokes he would tell. FRANK was a HAMS HAM! Not only that but he was always a gentleman, even when provoked. If their were a thousand posts listed here, they would all be positive. God rest is soul. Of all the amateur radio operators I have known in my life time.....Frank will be the most remembered.
Contributed by: Paul S. Wolfenbarger (KU8R)
I have known Frank for the last 10 years. We were both members of the Southwest Ohio DX Assn. Frank was a man of a million jokes and never told the same one twice. He gave our club meeting program May 15th, and although not felling well, Frank was his usual self; happy-go-lucky and telling his jokes. Frank had 376 DXCC countries - an outstanding accomplishment. Some club members are going on a Dxpedition to Montserrat in late July and our trip will be in memory of Frank who had been on many Dx trips himself. It was great knowing and being around Frank. We will miss you my friend. Rest in peace. Joe W8GEX
Contributed by: Joe Pater (W8GEX)
I was indeed saddened to hear that Frank had passed away. I first met Frank in early 1975 while taking the DARA Novice classes at the Dayton Museum of Natural History. It was Frank who administered my Novice Code test and I will never forget how patient he was with all of we "pre-novices" roughly pounding out our 5 wpm sending tests for him. I also knew Frank via his place of employment for many years, Brown and Kroger Printing of Dayton.
I moved away from Dayton in 1982 but occasionally ran into Frank (mostly on 20 meters) in the years since. Frank was a true gentleman and an all around "nice guy".
The ham radio community has lost a truly remarkable ambassador of the hobby!
KR4BD (ex-WN8VMI & WB8VMI)
Contributed by: Tom Mulvaney (KR4BD)
I started my DX career while working for General Motors in Dayton, Ohio from 1971-1975. If you were a DXer, you discovered immediately that W8OK was "the man" when it came to DXing in the Dayton area. Frank was part of the elite Miami Valley Contest group that dominated Field Day for many years and talked me into operating with the crew in 1975. What a mind blowing experience! This was my first exposure to serious "hard core" operating. Later in the 1980's I saw Frank at the ARRL Convention in Cedar Rapids, battle in the CW event and get certified for stone solid 50 WPM CW copy. He was absolutely giddy with the success. The DARA Hamvention group has a number of outstanding individuals who have made contributions over the years, but Frank had something magical in his dealings with people. Everywhere he participated in the hobby, be it DARA, Miami Valley, SWODXA, or the Hamvention, Frank left his mark. Frank had an uncanny skill in bringing people together, but he also benefitted from being technically competent in every phase of the amateur radio art. Frank is gone, but he will continue to inspire everyone who met him during his wonderful time in the hobby.
Contributed by: Steve P. Gecewicz (K0CS)
I am looking for personal stories about how Frank has
made a difference in your life for an article in the 2004
Hamvention Program. The theme is about how he planted
seed in a lot of people and organizations that continue to
grow and will to grow for a long time to come.
Contributed by: Mel Berman (W8GTR)
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