K8RA, Jerry Pittenger Silent Key

Discussion in 'Silent Keys / Friends Remembered' started by N8CWU, Jan 3, 2014.

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  1. N8CWU

    N8CWU Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    From ARRL Website

    QST author and CW key crafter Jerry Pittenger, K8RA, of Powell, Ohio, died January 2 of pancreatic cancer. He was 66. Licensed in 1960, Pittenger was a retired systems engineer. He earned a bachelor’s degree at Miami University and an MS in systems engineering from Ohio State.

    Pittenger enjoyed building his own equipment, and some of his amplifier projects were featured in QST, The ARRL Handbook, and RF Amplifier Classics. More recently he manufactured a line of solid-brass iambic and single-lever CW keyssold worldwide, until illness forced him to quit.
    “Making my CW keys fills much of my time, but it is a labor of love,” Pittenger said in his online profile. “I can get lost in time machining metals and making things in the shop for the radio.” His friends Mike Freeman, NT8O, and Fred Freeman, N8BX, have taken over the production of the K8RA line.
    On the air Pittenger primarily enjoyed CW but occasionally could be found on other modes.
     
  2. GM0HKS

    GM0HKS Ham Member QRZ Page

    A very very sad time as Jerry was a truly inspiring individual who gave so much to so many. I shall miss him deeply. Will / GM0HKS
     
  3. AJ4GQ

    AJ4GQ Ham Member QRZ Page

    R.I.P. Jerry. We will miss you.
    Hart
     
  4. K7JBQ

    K7JBQ Moderator Volunteer Moderator QRZ Page

    What a loss.

    I'm proud to say I use one of Jerry's keys every day.

    73,
    Bill
     
  5. WU7F

    WU7F Ham Member QRZ Page

    Jerry sent my son, Mike - KD7UUB, a prototype of one of paddles for Mike's 12th birthday about eleven years ago. The 'Tech Bubble' had burst and I was looking for a new job. I couldn't afford to buy paddles for my son at that time. Jerry knew of my situation, and just sent the paddles to my son with a birthday card. That gift meant a lot to my son, but I think it means even more to me. Jerry was a great guy, and an inspiration. I will always remember his act of kindness.

    I was delighted to see his picture on the cover of the ARRL Handbook a couple of years later (I think it was 2004). The home-brew amplifier he built looked like he had been as meticulous with it as his work with his paddles.
     
  6. K1DNR

    K1DNR Ham Member QRZ Page

    Love my K8RA paddle. Rest in peace OM
     
  7. 9M2PJU

    9M2PJU Ham Member QRZ Page

    OM Jerry is one of the amazing and kindhearted person i ever knew. He once donated his CW key to the children who showed interest on Morse code at hamfest.

    "[TABLE="width: 100%"]
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    [TD="colspan: 4, align: left"]But wait – if you don’t know this man – you need to hear this story I heard from some ham folks at a Car Show yesterday in Flint, Michigan – this ham told me a great story that happened at the 2012 Dayton Ham convention this year. Well Tom brought with him a newly licensed ham – a 15 year old blind fellow to the show - they went by Jerry’s booth K8RA, and played with some of his keys. Now Tom just learned, and to his amazement just prior to their venture to Dayton, this boy had taught himself morse code. He was over at Tom’s home and asked, “Can I work that DX station too”? Tom said “ Its morse code” – and the boy answered “Yes I know”. Well he got on the key and made that contact. The boy was excited since it was his first DX contact. Well to get back to the story = I guess they played with Jerry’s keys at the booth, and the boy was sending out his call etc. Jerry asked "How long have you been a ham" and the boy answered "I just got my General a month ago." Jerry turned around and gave the boy one of his keyers. I guess we can imagine, this boy was elated! What a gesture! Tom played with it that night and went back later and bought a key from Jerry too. Knowing Jerry’s history some, being an Eagle Scout, I'm not surprised at his compassion. That great gesture, is appreciated by all and Tom just can’t stop telling the story. So I’m taking this opportunity to also spread throughout the ham community, thanks Jerry for helping to keep the spirit alive. Armin WD8CRQ[/TD]
    [/TR]
    [/TABLE]

    He also offered to repair his keys free of charge to this customers, read http://w6rdg.blogspot.com/2009/09/one-of-good-guys.html.

    His CW keys also on my wishlist. I never met him personally but we keep exchanging emails since early 2013 talking about CW and also CW keys. He told me about his family and we chat about our passion on CW. He even promised to give me free shipping cost if i buy his keys. But today, someone told me that he is already passed away on 1/2/14. Rest in peace OM Jerry.
     
  8. K8ERV

    K8ERV Ham Member QRZ Page

    Jerry used to visit me in Mansfield Ohio, LONG ago. Then I lost track of him. Tnx to all for the updates.

    TOM K8ERV Montrose Colo
     
  9. 9M2PJU

    9M2PJU Ham Member QRZ Page

    Jerry not with us anymore, but i'm sure his keys used by many ham radio operators in the world will always making CW signals, helps your transceivers heating up the ionosphere for him. If you want one of his keys, put it on a frame. May Jerry will be always remembered. He is not here anymore, but his legacies will..
     
  10. KB2FCV

    KB2FCV Ham Member QRZ Page

    Wow, I didn't realize Jerry passed away. I have one of the his P1 paddles here on my desk, its a nice key. Rest in peace.
     
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