Patty and Ken and Ellen are part of a growing contingent of the Island County Amateur Radio Club members on South Whidbey. They also happen to be Red Cross volunteers.
On Saturday, June 23, they joined Amateur Radio operators from throughout Island County for a national Field Day event from South Whidbey Community Park.
Field Day is the year’s single largest, most important national emergency communications event for Amateur Radio people. Throughout the country, ham radio operators set up radio stations in unusual locations, make contact with others and display their emergency communications capabilities.
Hams provide critical emergency communications for many government and civic organizations in disasters. In the past year alone, ham radio communicators have made headlines with their tireless support work in wildfires, floods, storms, tornadoes and other crises around the nation.
Organizations like the Island County Amateur Radio Club provide supplemental communications for local, county and state agencies when normal systems are rendered inoperable or overloaded.
In the words of the Island County Amateur Radio Club president, Jack Prendergast, “Hams have been called (and correctly), the people behind the curtain that made the heroes look good.”
To find out more about volunteering with the American Red Cross as an Amateur Radio Operator or in other capacities, visit: www.redcross.org and click “volunteer.”