Gene Spinelli has been a licensed amateur radio operator for over 41 years. My interest in electronics goes back to the teenage years. Joining the US Navy 2 weeks after turning 17, attending Electronics Technician Class "A" School at Great Lakes, Illinois and went on to service various radar and communications equipment aboard US Navy radar picket ships. In 1965, while at sea, I studied for a Conditional Class License, but never took the test. My enlistment ended in 1967 and went into the computer service(s) business from where I retired after nearly 40 years, but went back to the field as a consultant for 5 more years.

While living in Arlington, Texas,  I went to the FCC office in Dallas and sat outside the testing room on the hard wooden bench, waiting to be called by the examiner. Back then the tests were administered by 2 "steely eyed FCC examiners" (as Wayne Greene, W2NSD, described them). They first administered the CW receiving and sending test, then handed you the written test documents. As I sat for the written test among 20 some odd other people one of the examiners yelled out "Spinelli you passed the CW test". A lot different than today's "high touch" testing process. I can also remember waiting for my ticket to arrive in the mail with my first callsign. Of course, The Little Print Shop would send you sample QSL cards with your new callsign long before the actual ticket arrived!

Past callsigns are: WB5WFD, WD6DLK, and KE6LT,  also hold VK2IXC and ZL1NA