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Friends Remembered Home | Friends Detail

LeMay, Curtis (Gen., USAF) (W6EZV)

October 1, 1990

My mistake. The General was W6EZV (not N6EZV) and D4AFE. If anyone has any stories regaring a QSO with him, please forward to (all lower case). Thank you.

Contributed by: Armand Gherlone (W1NEW)

I never talked to Gen LeMay on the air, but he handed me my commission as an Air Force Lieutenant on 3 June 1964, and after flying school, I served 19 years in Strategic Air Command, which he built and set the standards for. It was an honor!

Contributed by: KQ6Q (KQ6Q)

I have never spoken to the General as a Ham, but I am reminded of a true story that I wittnessed; I was on TDY at Offut AFB as an Honor Guard when LeMay arrived and he came off of the KC-80 Tanker with a lit Cigar in his mouth (his trademark) when of of his Aides suggested that he put out his cigar - LeMay asked why - the Aid told him that due to the highly explosive AV-Gas that the plane may blow up and LeMay responded by saying "Seargent, it had better not!!") So that was our arrogant General Curtis E. LeMay - but a great General - the Russians wouldn't even dare to think of attacking the US while LeMay was in charge of SAC!! Ron, W6BR

Contributed by: Ron Bracklow, W6BR (W6BR)

Well now it was in 1955 or 56 that we in the MARS Station FAA916 kept track of D4AFE (W6EZV) in the Boeing he and Art Collin were using to promote SSB to the Air Force. As I remember we had QSO with them on many occasions as they travel the world with this new invention (KWM2). At that time F7EB, F7BD -K7AZN, me and a few other hams on Evreux/Faulville AB kept schedules. We used a BC-610 with a Central Lab 10A Exciter to mount a SSB signal on the HAM Bands. Some had DSB Push Push rigs from home to contact them. We had Collins 51j4 receivers so no problem receiving their signals. It was very exciting to contact them. There were not many SSB stations then, mostly AM CW. The General was always congenial on the radio and you would have never known he was of rank, just one of the guys. He is somwhere in my log books yet. Jack

Contributed by: Jack Rohrback (K7AZN)

Gen. LeMay held the call-signs K0GRL,K4FRA and W6EZV sequentially.He frequently held QSO's from a B-29 and he and Art Collins brought about the switch to SSB for the long haul SAC flights back in 1957.

Contributed by: Kenneth Lynn Kretzer (W6IEZKEN)

We owe him a very large debt ! Some may have felt he was a little too aggressive. But in all a great American.

Contributed by: John Burch (K3JVB)

Contributed by: Howard R. Clayton, Jr. (W4HRC)

I too remember and consider Gen LeMay as one of our great leaders. I remember him saying `without communications', I can only command my desk. Back in 57, I assisted Collins Tech Reps to install back up SSB equipment for SAC Command and Control System. Later, i installed Marconi Ship to Shore equipment at the General's fishing camp. That was all we had at that time to communicate with them. Saw Gen Powers at the Salmon River camp. Later spent 3 years at Hq 8th AF. SAC FOREVER - AIR COMBAT COMMAND NEVER. Chief, retired

Contributed by: Joseph P. Molinaro (W2FUU)

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