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Net History

Pre-Net

The Wolverine pre-net generally begins anywhere from 30 to 60 minutes prior to the official start of the net.

Pre-net chatter: The pre-net time on 3935 is rich grounds for quips and one liners. Like a minor league of vaudeville acts, if a straight man is required, many are waiting in the wings to fulfill this role. Timing is critical and the window of opportunity is sometimes small. VOX helps in this respect. On rare occasion the straight man is unaware that he is even on stage until the punch line is dropped. Don - W8WOJ was looking through a newspaper flyer at some lumber prices, and asked in innocence "What's an economy stud"? Without hesitation came a reply from the peanut gallery "K8GOU". You always get an answer to your question on this frequency.

In several European countries, when men who respect each other meet, they hug and kiss. I'm thankful the kiss at least is fake and their lips miss the cheek by some distance. I would be quite uncomfortable in France. Here, men that are old friends often do the right thing and shake hands while throwing verbal barbs at each other. Though not always necessary, a thick skin sometimes can be an asset if you spend much time on 3935. There is often delight from the peanut gallery when a thrown barb or quip is gleefully returned to the sender point first. I am quite sure the Europeans would be appalled by this twisted show of high regard for each other. Of late, the peanut gallery awards points for wisecracks much like Olympic Judges. This is a better way to keep score than body counts.

Luckily, there are also many in the net that do not care for this kind of tom-foolery, and they lend some balance and dignity to the net. For them, I am thankful. Current events, the weather, personal triumphs and life's daily pleasures all give harmony to the frequency. Like the smiling fortune teller, there's a happy medium.

Meetings & Picnic

The ARRL conventions, Regional and National, were often held at various places in Michigan such as Grand Rapids, Muskegon, and Saginaw. New Equipment on display by vendors and manufacturers drew large crowds. In the past at these events, the net met to elect the officers for the year. In the evening some members went to the various watering holes around town. One spot with old time "atmosphere" that is remembered was the Backroom Saloon in Grand Rapids. There, the floor was covered with peanut shells that gave a unique charm to the place.

The summer picnics were held at assorted places over the years, and the diverse table fair was interesting. Van recalls nice spots at Ludington, Lansing and Blanchard. I recall that some picnics were combined Wolverine and Buzzard Roost such as the fun one at Midland County fairgrounds. Bob - K8LJS starred with the five string banjo and Dot and Sel Urband sang. Others joined in and if nothing else, we made a joyful noise.

(NOTE: Danny - K8GBC fails to point out that he has captured the net picnic site in his hometown of Owosso for the past number of years, a fact attributable to his age and failing memory. Bud - K8CPW)
.

Meeting face-to-face (the eyeball QSO)

Eyeball meetings for the first time can be an enlightenment. Even if you are well acquainted with this faceless voice, the mental picture we sometimes paint of someone often needs a lot of air brushing when we finally meet in person. So take some free advice from a slow learner.

When a group from the Wolverine introduces someone you have never met, don't just look at some nametag or call letter hat. Ask to see their driver's license and passport picture. If fingerprints are available, check them out against FBI records. Be particularly suspicious when introductions are made by Ike - W8GVS, Van - K8GOU, or Larry - WA8QCW. Remember also, that many are easily put up to mischief by others.

Ike - W8GVS recalls the time at an ARRL convention at the Morton Hotel in Grand Rapids when the net met to elect net officers for the year. Ike, in the company of Les - K8JHA, Doc - W8EGR and Phil - K8LQA were about ready to leave the dining area and were sipping coffee after having breakfast. Phil excused himself from the table and went to the restroom. When Phil returned to the table, no one was there but the waitress with all the unpaid checks. It is said that later Phil was reimbursed by the other Wolveriners. But of course, I have no way of verifying this.

Ladies Night

Men out number the ladies on the Wolverine Net, but the gals have been steadily gaining ground in amateur radio for many years. Ester - W8ATB was well known and gave distinguished service to the citizens of Flint during the Beecher Road tornado disaster in the late 50s. Ann - W8QOM from West Branch lent her charm on both the BR and Wolverine nets. Many others have well earned the respect of all. Dot - W8FJU sometimes went camping with a tent and amateur radio. I suggest the only reason she took her husband, Sel - W8OKW along was to be kind to Mr. Urband.
Francis - K8KCQ in 1961 lent her time and skills to the Wolverine as net secretary followed by Kelly - WA8PII, and Margaret - KA8MCH. All were fine additions to both the net family and amateur radio.
That 'Wild Zany Female' Mary - WA8WZF had a special passion for handling traffic. During the hostilities in southeast Asia, Mary often found outlets for important traffic sent to loved ones through the Wolverine Net. Mary was often listed in the QST Brass Pounders League for traffic volume. Mary was often so busy running traffic you might miss her keen wit. I was surprised when I met this renown traffic pusher whose smooth clear voice hid her age and wit from me. A few years my senior, she was a delightful lady wearing the sweatshirt that proclaimed "I Hate Housework"!
That 'Ultimate Woman Ham', Judi - N8UWH is now doing outstanding work as a regular net control on the net. Not often enough do we hear from Gerrie - N8GMA or Anna - NT8Y. Other calls remembered are Myriam- K8ILN and Betty House - K8VCB.
Last but not least, we should acknowledge and recognize that many spouses that are not hams, but give their support to mates that are. To all the spouses of both genders that give their support, let me paraphrase the song You Are The Wind Beneath Our Wings".

Member History

CHARTER MEMBERS

K8ACO BOB
W8ALG ERNIE
K8BZL TIM
K8CKD CLAY
W8CQU RUNARD
K8CWI RED
W8DWC PHIL
W6ECB FRANK
K8EFY ED
K4FXC JOHN
W8GFL JOHN
K8GOU VAN
W9JAI CHUCK
K8JED ART
K8JHA (W8LX) LES
W8JMR AL
K8JUG TRUMAN
W8JUY BILL
K8LQO JOHN
K8PDP (W3GHR) VAUGHN
W8QBA ROL
W8SDB CARL
W8VHQ JOHN
W8QVN LYLE
W8YAN DON

NET OFFICERS

YEAR

PRESIDENT

VICE PRESIDENT

SECRETARY

1960

K8JUG, TRUMAN

K8CWG, KEN

K8CKD, CLAY

1961

W8JTQ, HOWAD

K8KCH, RALPH

K8KCQ, FRANCIS

1962

K8LQA, PHIL

K8KCH, RALPH

K8VDA, BILL

1963

W8CQU, RUNARD

K8JHA, LES

K8PVC, PETE

1964

K8JHA, LES

K8VDA, BILL

K8DYZ, JIM

1965

K8JHA, LES

K8VDA, BILL

K8DYZ, JIM

1966

K8VDA, BILL

K8GOU, VAN

K8AYJ, JERRY

1967

K8AYJ, JERRY

WA8GTG, LOU

W8SAY, JERRY

1968

K8WRJ, DOC

W8QBE, TOM

K8OEB, J.O.

1969

W8QBE, TOM

W8VXM, BOB

WA8GTG, LOU

1970

W8VXM, BOB*

1971

K8PVC, PETE

WB8EEU, JIM

WA8PII, KELLY

1972

K8PVC, PETE

W8MPD, STAN

WA8PII, KELLY

1973

W8GVS, IKE

K8JHA, LES

WA8PII, KELLY

1974

K8GBC, DAN

WB8OKA, AL

W8QBE, TOM

1975

WB8JIX, GEORGE

W8UOQ, JIM

WB8OKA, AL

1976

WB8JIX, GEORGE

W8UOQ, JIM

W8POZ, STAN

1977

W8SOP, PAUL

WB8VIA, LLOYD

W8POZ, STAN

1978

K8AXL, CHUCK

W8JVP, KEN

W8SOP, PAUL

1979

W8JVP, KEN

NONE

NONE

1980

WB8VIA, LLOYD

K8ICZ, MIKE

W8POZ, STAN

1981

KX8J, MARTY

WB8EYM, DON

K8GOU, VAN

1982

KX8J, MARTY

W8UFS, NELSON

K8MSJ, ROSS

1983

WB8EYM, DON

W8UFS, NELSON

K8MSJ, ROSS

1984

W8WOJ, DON

WB8OKA, AL

K8MSJ, ROSS

1985

K8MSJ, ROSS

W8NDI, GARY

KA8MCH,MARGARET

1986

W8NDI, GARY

1987

W8NDI, GARY

W8WOJ, DON

KA8MCH,MARGARET

1988

W8NDI, GARY

***

** WA8VQL, RALPH

1990

K8GOU, VAN

 

WA8VQL, RALPH

1991

K8JRE, JOE

 

N8MOK, AL

1992

K8JRE, JOE

 

N8MOK, AL

1993

K8JRE, JOE

 

N8MOK, AL

1994

K8JRE, JOE

 

N8MOK, AL

1995

K8JRE, JOE

 

K8CPW, BUD

1996

K8JRE, JOE

 

K8CPW, BUD

1997

K8JRE, JOE

 

K8CPW, BUD

1998

K8JRE, JOE

 

K8CPW, BUD

1999

K8JRE, JOE

 

K8CPW, BUD

2000

K8JRE, JOE

 

K8CPW, BUD

2001

WB8ICN, MIKE

 

K8CPW, BUD

2002

WB8ICN, MIKE

 

K8CPW, BUD

2003

WB8ICN, MIKE

 

K8CPW, BUD

2004

WB8ICN, MIKE

 

K8CPW, BUD

2005

WB8ICN, MIKE

 

K8CPW, BUD

2006

WB8ICN, MIKE

 

K8CPW, BUD

2007

WB8ICN, MIKE

 

K8CPW, BUD

2008

WB8ICN, MIKE

 

K8CPW, BUD
K8RWH, BILL

2009

WB8ICN, MIKE
K9RON, RON

 

K8RWH, BILL

2010

WB8ICN, MIKE
K9RON, RON

 

K8RWH, BILL

       
  NET MANAGER   MEMBERSHIP MANAGER

2011

K9RON, RON

 

K8RWH, BILL

2012

K9RON, RON

 

K8RWH, BILL/N8GFY, ART

2013

N8DC, DAVE

 

K8TAS, TAS

2014

N8DC, DAVE

 

K8TAS, TAS

2015

N/A

 

K8TAS, TAS

2016

K8DXJ, DORIS

 

K8TAS, TAS

2017

K8DXJ, DORIS

 

K8TAS, TAS

NOTES:   *No election was held in 1970. W8QBE served as president until March 30th, and then W8VXM finished the year as president.
**WA8VQL replaced KA8MCH as net secretary in October, 1987.
***The office of vice president was discontinued after 1987.

SILENT KEYS

K8ACO   BOB
K8AYJ   JERRY
WA8BDG   JOHN
W8CAM   ED
K8CKD   CLAY
W8CQU   RUNYARD
K8CWG   KEN
K8CWI   RED
WB8DKQ   KEN
W8DTG   DOUG
W8DWC   PHIL
W4GHR   JOE
WA8GTG   LOU
K8GXV   ERNIE
W8HJK   WELLS
KX8J   MARTY
K8JED   ART
K8JQP   ED
W8JUY   BILL
N8JVP   KEN
W8LCU   RALPH
K8LJS   BOB
WD8LNW   ANDY
W8LRM   AL
W8LX  (K8JHA)   LES
K8MSJ   ROSS
W8NDI   GARY
W8NXB   RALPH
K8ODY   DICK
WA8PII   KELLY
W8QBE   TOM
W8QOM   ANNIE
W8RL   JIM
K8RNN   PAUL
K8RRB   LARRY
W8SAY   JERRY
K8SUC  JIM
WA8TAN   JIM
W8TPT   JIM
W8UOQ   JIM
K9UPD   DOC
W8VXM   BOB
K8WRJ   DOC
WA8WZF   MARY
W8YMI   PAUL
N8DXX   TOM
N8MJC   CLANCY
W8FOM   TED
K8VDA   BILL
W8RYA   JIM
K8AXV   BILL
N8ML   MEL
W8LDS   SAM
WB8ITJ   JACK
NS8Z  WILMER
W8PLC  BUD
NS8Z  Wilmer
K8ROH  Elmer
W8LZ  Laurence
W8GVS  Ike
W8SJK  Warren
K8GOU  Van
KC8VFI  Mike
W2PFS  Al
WD8LUM  Marshall
W8LOU  Bob
WB9OHN  Frank
KB8TVA  Clyde
N8GFY - Art
K8WLD - Dave
KD8EYD - Richard
W2PFS - Harold
WT8J - Harvey

 

NCS OF THE YEAR

This award was conceived in 1997 to encourage more members to participate as Net Control Stations:
1997 K8GOU
1998 W8SJK
1999 W8YDJ
2000 K8JRE
2001 W8WAO

Award Information

Certificates

Certificates pop up from time to time; some are pure tongue-in-cheek affairs, and others genuinely sincere. In 1972, Pete- K8PVC put out "Official Certificates" to net control stations as does Joe - K8JRE. I believe these were purchased with net funds and are official documents of the net. Clearly, I found that in some years the needed information on Net Control Certificates was not passed when net officers changed.
 

The Attaboy Awards

(History provided by Dan - K8GBC) 

When I was net manager in 1974 (not knowing we had certificates for net control stations), we had some fun that year with the "Attaboy Awards". Each month I gave out these certificates to the net control station that had the largest number of check-ins for the period. They were crudely drawn affairs, but somehow became quite coveted. I had "borrowed" the original idea from my union's bulletin board at the fire station.

CERTIFICATE - W8UFS

For your very outstanding performance you are hereby awarded ***ONE ATTABOY*** One thousand 'attaboys' qualifies you to be a leader of men, work overtime with a smile, explain problems to management, and be looked on as a Local Hero (NOTE: One 'Go to Hell' wipes the board clean and you have to start all over again).
James (Doc) Voorhees, W8RL, located in Hillsdale (better known as Billy Goat Bridge) added much to the net for years. Doc delighted in telling the net about his bird watching. He would say "I saw a nice Ruby Lipped Double Breasted Bed Thresher today". On the serious side, this early sideband pioneer had built his own SSB transmitter and was an expert technician. He was always willing to help someone out on the net that had rig problems. Doc was quite opinionated, and you always knew where he stood on an issue. Though many things could anger Doc, the Conditional Class ham license to him, was an atrocity. He despised them!
Doc was an excellent net control, but fate was unkind in the matter of the Attaboy. After several months time, W8RL had never met the requirements for this award. Doc was trying to get under my skin and said if he didn't get an Attaboy next, he was going to quit being a net control. Shortly after this, Les - K8JHA and I met at some swap and got to talking about Doc wanting this award. Less puffed on his pipe a little, got a twinkle in his eye and said "Why don't you send him one, but type across the top CONDITIONAL CLASS".
I did just what the Kingfish said. In a few days Doc sent back the Attaboy and where the conditional class has been typed was a charred hole. It was accompanied by a tongue-in-cheek letter that said I was a poor net manager and could "shove it cinder end first". The net members always gave me the credit for getting Doc, but I was just a pawn. Les Bible - K8JHA was really the knight that had called checkmate on Doc.
Attaboy recipients: Nels - W8FS; Don - WB8EYM; Les - K8JHA; Ernie - K8GXV; Tom - W8QBE; Pete - K8PVC; Van - K8GOU; Doc - W8RL (Conditional Class); Jim - W8UOQ; Ken - WB8DKQ; Stan - W8POZ.

Award Requirements

MYSTIC KNIGHTS OF THE SEA: This is a special award that is presented to an individual upon completion for membership criteria that is covered elsewhere in this document.

NET CONTROL OF THE YEAR: This is an award originally conceived in 1997. The first presentation was made at the annual picnic during the summer of 1998 to Van, K8GOU for his outstanding contributions as a net control station and having served as an alternate in the absence of other net control stations throughout the year (see listing below).

The intent of this award is to annually honor a net control station who displays outstanding operating practices and meets criteria established by the selection committee which is composed of at least one net officer and two net members. This committee may make a selection based upon agreed criteria.

Any member who serves as a regular or alternate net control station is eligible for the award.

Additionally, it is hoped this will foster more interest in serving as regular or alternate net controls.

Nominations for the award should be submitted to the net manager not later than December 31st of the year preceding it's presentation.

ATTA-BOY AWARDS: This is a special award presented to stations who meet certain criteria which is outlined elsewhere in this document.

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