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4X1AT - Silent Key

  In memory of Ahron Kirshner 4X1AT   

Some personal reflections

I think I first met Ahron at some of the functions of the Israel Amateur Radio Club in the later 70's. With the advent of 2 meter FM and accesing the Tel-Aviv repeater from my Negev QTH, I got to know Tel-Aviv area hams and was invited to their homes. I remember being a guest at a barbeque party at Ahron (then 4X4AT) and Shoshie 4X6OL's, and seeing how they had turned their home into the Holon-Bat-Yam amateur radio club house, and were elmering scores of people who became hams thanks especially to Ahron's efforts and generosity.

In 1982, at the IARC Annual General Meeting, Ahron nominated me to IARC executive committee, Not knowing better, I accepted, and because of my physical distance from the center of the country and inability to attend most council meetings, I began my writing career offering English-language reportage of Israel Ham Radio news for the IARC HaGAL magazine and the late American 73 Magazine.

During my three year sojourn at art school in Tel-Aviv, Ahron approached me about making my English-language news reportage into a monthly newsletter. Ahron offered the use of his computer (still a rarity in the mid-80's) and he and Shoshie took care of the printing and mailing of the newsletter to subscribers around the world. As it turned out, Ahron had a very good command of the English language and proved to be a prolific writer. This partnership gave birth to HaGAL International, which has continued all these last 20 years. Without Ahron, this venture would never have come to be.

When I moved back to the Negev, we continued collaborating in our joint writing of the newsletter through packet radio. Ahron and Shoshie continued to print it out, stuff and label the envelopes and mail it out every month with the regularity a fine Swiss clock.

Over the years Shoshie and Ahron visited me and my family here on the kibbutz, and we kept regular contact.

Of course, I'm sure, many will tell of Ahron's many other accomplishments and ventures... the DXpeditions and special radio operations around Israel, the establishment of the annual IARC presence at the Ham Radio fair at Friedrichshafen Germany, teaching so many people to become hams, etc. etc. All of this was done at his own personal expense, without a thought about being remunerated.

As we know, Ahron was, as today's politically correct terminology would call it, "physically challenged." Having contracted polio in the 1950's I believe, Ahron was confined to a wheel-chair. Yet, he never gave the impression of being a handicapped person, never letting his disability stand in his way. He built a successful business, raised a fine family, and accomplished much more than most able-bodied people ever did. I shall never forget seeing him single-handedly negotiate a flight of stairs on his wheelchair, quite a feat indeed.

Ahron, the last number of years were unkind to you and made it impossible to enjoy life and your beloved ham radio. Now you have been released and continue the great cosmic journey beyond the ionosphere. I send much love to you and all your dear ones.

In friendship,

Ron Gang, 4X1MK