Feb 2012. Mafia Wars GFB vs MWG….

Posted on February 22, 2020
Filed Under MafiaWars | Leave a Comment

Short video showing the results of the War…
Not only does the video show all MwG members dead… but dead so often the bully trigger (A rate limiter) was activated.

These ICES weren’t by me… I was much to weak to take most of these guys..

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EmComm – Lessons from hurricane Michael

Posted on October 15, 2018
Filed Under Amateur Radio, EmComm | 2 Comments

On October 10th, 2018 Category 4 hurricane Michael impacted the Florida panhandle. It’s 155 mph winds completely destroyed homes along the beach and obliterated the infrastructure all around Panama City.


A total loss of communications occurred. No electricity, no internet, no cell phones and a failure of the statewide 08 trunked system in the local area. No communications between shelters. Police,Fire and government..  Total disarray. The local government may have depended on that trunked system to highly.

All amateur systems i.e 2 meter/440 repeaters in the area failed. (To my knowledge).  Loss of power?

I will try to update this post when I get reliable details on what and why systems failed.

I do know that requests for amateurs did not happen prior to the storm. I know this because one shelter contacted me and I passed on the request for staffing.

What we need:

There are IMPORTANT lessons to be learned here for coastal Mississippi. Our Local / State government agencies also depend on a trunked system. They  do NOT have fixed plans to staff shelters and other important areas with amateurs prior to storms.  Brand new local shelters in Jackson County don’t even have provisions for communications equipment or personnel.

We KNOW from experience with other hurricanes such communications systems fail.  There is a time to avoid these failures, and it is before a storm hits. It requires planning and implementation.

We must be prepared for the next storm(s).  Organize and work with Local / State officials. Setup systems (multiple) of communications, with emergency / solar power.  Systems that DO NOT RELY on the Internet. Systems such as D-Star/Fusion/Echolink that utilize the internet are useless when it fails.  Radio based mesh networks, packet systems work. Of course stand alone voice repeaters work well when alternate power sources are available.  Portable digipeaters, portable voice repeaters should be on hand.


We also need to be trained. First some agencies don’t want our help unless we are trained. In fact some are turned away. So to be most effective we need training in local procedures and FEMA / DHS standards. Take the time to go online and do some training.

Let us look to our neighbors to the East and gain some important knowledge about what works and most importantly what failed.

Don’t assume that cell phones and power will be restored quickly. It takes time for Cell phone companies to bring in their Cellular on Wheels. They have them staged to bring in, but until roads are cleared and can be driven upon, they wait.

Putting out a call for amateurs to travel to the area after the storm is important, but realize that they may not be able to get in due to either obstructed roads…OR Governmental obstruction. i.e Police or National Guard checkpoints not allowing them entry.
This happens…EVERY TIME.

People need help after the storm. Supplies need to be coordinated for delivery. Medical issues need communicated. From the very minor and mundane to life saving requirements.   This ability failed for DAYS. Amateurs have the ability to provide these communications locally and nationwide. But we need to be prepared in advance.



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The Other Family…

Posted on July 24, 2018
Filed Under Rants and Ramblings | Leave a Comment

An Open Letter – The Family.

For more than 20 years now, I have watched you and yours.

From the moment I told you I wanted to marry your daughter you treated me like family.

I saw your love, saw your caring.

We have tried to fit in, be a part of the family. Offered our help, been asked for help and helped in times of need.

Watched as others under your care used you.  Took money from you.
Stole your items and you turned a blind eye because it was family. Watched the drama and in-fighting among some of the family. Heard the lies that were spoken. And yet you still loved because they were family.

I guess we were raised differently than your other halves offspring. We help willingly, our help wasn’t purchased with money, but with the coin of love and concern.

Now that you are gone and your main love is left to suffer the perils of the aged .. alone because it is inconvenient.

No one cares. Because they have their own petty lives. Caring is inconvenient.

After a lifetime of taking care of them, guiding them.
Supporting them financially. Being there for them.

It is inconvenient to interrupt their lives to help her. A sacrifice they are not willing to make.

You are gone, the link we had into this family gone. So we’re told we aren’t family now. Outcast.

Barely gone and they already are taking her belongings. Taking her money. A lifetime of items meant to support your wife during her twilight.

But they won’t take the time to care, at least not for long.
Some will pretend to care if they are paid. Until the money is gone..then what?

Taking away her medical care, treatments that give her a better quality of life.
Is it because that might extend her life thus extending the inconvenience?
Because they feel superior and have the right to tell her how to live?
What she wants is to inconvenient. They’ll decide for her.

Taking away even the smallest things that give her joy?
What kind of people are these that would be so callous.
So busy with their lives that they can’t help her in her most desperate time.
Without complaining about how inconvenient or being compensated?

Taking the smallest things from her that remind her of a past life, a time when life was good.
Her very memories?
Taking control of her life because they *know* best for her.
Because it is inconvenient for them to let her live her own life as much as possible for the short time she may have left on this Earth.

Who are these people that would be so deceitful? So hateful. So truly uncaring.

Every single one.. is your family. Your blood.

The ones you loaned money to, the ones you gave land to, the ones you gave life to.

And they have returned it by letting you pay them when they would *help* you.
It appears to me that they were happy to help as long as they are paid.

I saw as you aged and were less capable the *help* they offered when you asked.

Cut your grass? $$$
Fix up your bathroom? $$$
Fix your car? $$$
Bail them out of jail? $$$

I have watched, listened and learned.

You asked a favor of me as you were preparing to leave this Earth.

You knew this would happen.

I will do my best to keep that promise.

I see what they do. If I can’t stop it, I can certainly make it difficult for them to fulfill their goals.

I thank the Lord above that I am not part of that type of family, but you will always be part of mine.


Your other Son.









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Patrick Sherrill, the man I didn’t know.

Posted on February 22, 2018
Filed Under Amateur Radio, Rants and Ramblings | Leave a Comment

August 20, 1986 is a day I will ever remember.
That is the day I walked into the living room and the TV had a picture of a balding man on it. I yelled to my wife – “Hey that’s Pat Sherrill on TV”. I turned up the TV only to hear he had killed 14 people and himself on the job at the Post Office in Edmond Oklahoma.  Denial and shock was my first feeling. That isn’t the guy I knew years ago.

Patrick Sherrill, WB5JYK.

Pat was a bit odd. Not scary odd…just not your *normal* acting dude.

I met Pat via Amateur Radio back around 1974 or 1975. I had communicated with him several times and one day…he just showed up at my house. I was around 16-17 at the time.  I was a bit put off that he just showed up. He didn’t stay long.  We talked about radio stuff. After that we became common communicators via ham radio. I would even say he was a friend. Somewhat older…but that really wasnt unusual as most Amateur Radio folks were older than I was at the time.

Belonging to some of the same radio clubs in Oklahoma City.  Pat was somewhat involved in emergency communications via the Amateur radio club and participated in the annual field day extravaganza. Not only did he show up for events, he would help setup and take down.  Believe it or not that is unusal. Most people show up for a while then leave.  Pat actually helped.  His  Amateur Radio call sign was WB5JYK. In 1976 he used the centennial prefix of AB5JYK.

Prior to my joining the USAF I worked at Black Radio Co. where I repaired and installed commercial radios, including State law enforcement agencies.  I recommended Pat for a job there when an opening became available.  I worked with and alongside him for over a year.  He was always polite. Somewhat soft spoken. Very smart. However sometimes he did work a bit slower than expected.  That being said he generally did a good job.

We all make mistakes periodically.  One or two  of his come to mind.  He was installing a radio in a vehicle. It required a high current source so it connected directly to the car battery with heavy cables.  In hilarious hindsight I remember him slamming the hood of the car. Moments later smoke starts billowing out from the engine compartment. I ran over and opened the hood and saw a glowing  red hot wire melting its way through the many hoses in the compartment. With the nut driver I still had in my grasp, I hooked the wire lifting it and yanked it loose from the battery connection. Pat had mounted the circuit breaker too high and when he closed the hood it shorted to the vehicle body.  Our boss, Elmo Black, was a very good gentleman and didn’t fire Pat. Or even yell at him.  Just paid to have the vehicle repaired. Thankfully no fire broke out.
There was another incident involving a drill and long screws. Somehow Pat drilled through the center console / transmission hump to mount a radio. Sadly he also drilled INTO the transmission. Oops! Didn’t get fired for that one either.

Civil Service –

Pat was always talking about wanting to get a job with civil service and the Post office. To this day I have no idea why that was one of his life goals. Maybe the retirement.  He certainly had the ability/knowledge to make more money, at least in the short term.  Like I said he was a bit odd. I guess he did achieve that goal. I am sure he was appalled and disappointed to learn such jobs have a lot office politics.

I have no recollection of Pat talking about guns or rifles, even when another co-worker brought in his Thompson Contender handgun. Or when the OSBI agents showed us their weapons mounted in their trunks of vehicles.  If the vehicle had to stay overnight they had to remove the guns.

Something must have changed in his life since I had last saw him.  Six years had passed since our last meeting and when he killed his co-workers and himself. Somehow, in his mind, things twisted beyond his ability to control it.  Nothing his coworkers did could have justified his actions. Somehow in his mind he was justified. Somehow his mind got sick. Tragically he hurt others before taking his own life.

He will always be remembered  as “Going Postal”.

I try to just remember the Pat I knew, not the Crazy Pat everyone knows about.

For the curious here are some links to pages about Pat and his role in the Edmond murders. Some are subjective and more prone to sensationalism.


Oklahoma Historical Society




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The lack of Amateur Radio utilization during emergencies in South Mississippi.

Posted on June 23, 2017
Filed Under Amateur Radio, Gulf Coast, Rants and Ramblings | Leave a Comment

Use Amateur Radio to improve public safety.

What exactly does Amateur Radio provide to local officials during emergencies that isn’t part of their communication infrastructure?

I live in Jackson County Mississippi.  Sure there are periodic *nets* where we check in….basically saying we’re here…  so what? I am not aware of *any* real coordinated effort to provide communication services to local officials during times of need. Most of those that check in…will be gone during a real emergency. Not that I blame them for that…evacuate if you need. No one wants to sit in a powerless house for two weeks.

In the past Amateurs may have gone (or still plan on going) to a shelter during a hurricane to provide local communications if needed. And that is actually important..

Is that a coordinated effort to meet a need of the local community? Anyone ask them?

But we can do so very much more for the community during these times of need.  And we can do most of them will only moderate cost, but perhaps a higher personal cost-with the payment in coin of dedication.

Perhaps our biggest failing is lack of interest or motivation.

We need to find out the local requirements for communications during these times that are not being met by current infrastructure…AND how we can not only meet those needs, but provide solutions to others when that infra-structure fails. If we can’t deliver on our promise next time we wont be asked..and worse possibly actively shunned.

Not only do we need to offer our services, we need to *demonstrate* to them what we can do. Our ability do do the job anytime, anywhere is paramount.

I think many just visualize Amateur Radio as just passing health and welfare messages from areas of little or no communication or to move that traffic off of existing overloaded infrastructure.  Of some operator sitting hunched over a table with radios and headphones on while  spouting numbers. We can…and should be doing much more and not just during emergencies.

Like what?

Perhaps sending video of specific areas of concern during special events to law enforcement?
Information on flooding in the local area to a central command post? A recently missed opportunity during TS Cindy!
Provide a *real* hi-speed mesh network in the area that doesn’t use the internet. This opens up a HUGE area of abilities we can provide.
Said network could be used to connect shelters, hospitals,Red Cross,EOC’s and much more.  Use different modes. SSB,CW,DIGITAL. Take advantage of the free software to provide these services over Amateur radio links.

Find out local needs and requirements from local officials.  Make them aware of what else we do that amateur radio offers. You might be surprised to find that they can actually USE these services. It’s up to us to show them that these services can be DEPENDED upon to be available.

A benefit to showing what can be done, and convincing others that we are useful is that perhaps local officials will assist amateurs in locating equipment where it will benefit them. Such as repeater locations, mesh network nodes on towers.  If we show them we will help them in public safety…they will help us do that job.

How can YOU help?  Get involved! If no group is available then form a new group, determine what your group can provide and offer your help.  If no one helps… nothing will get done.  Remember the famous quote  by John Lewis – “If not us, then who? If not now, then when?”

Training… There are at least two groups of amateurs nationwide with a sole purpose of Pubic Safety communications. RACES and ARES.

RACES – Certified and registered operators – managed by FEMA. (RACES stations may only communicate with specified stations)

ARES – Licensed amateurs who have voluntarily registered their qualifications and equipment for communications duty in the public service. No specific requirements other than being licensed.

During large disasters such as hurricanes… RACES tends to be focused on due to the FEMA involvement.

We do not have to be RACES/ARES affiliated but we do have to be motivated,trained and available to help. More importantly we CAN be of actual help in these situations. We need to know where that help is needed before we can offer it. And we need training and practice to efficiently work with local public safety groups.

The days of sending just a radiogram format message are long gone. In the digital age we can send ANYTHING.








Field Day –

The ARRL organized Field Day in the last weekend of June is where ALL groups should be publicly demonstrating our abilities.

Many groups just try to score points by making the most contacts – but – this is a great time to show the world what we can do.
But you must:

a) Let the public know you’ll be doing it.
b) Rain or shine… DO IT.  If you can’t setup an operation with weeks of planning because of bad weather, how are you going to do it for real…
c)Get non-amateurs involved!!!!!

Amateur Radio Emergency Data Network logoJackson County Amateur Radio Association













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