In Memory of
Ray Leslie, WA7EKH
Ray was a life member of the Mike & Key Club and
"Pop" Brown Award recipent in 1980.
We have lost another
long time Club member. Ray Leslie, WA7EKH, went
silent key on October 15th. Ray Leslie was a major
part of this Club for a long time through the 1980's and
first half part of the 1990's. Seemingly guff, (OK, he
WAS REALLY gruff) to those who didn't get to know
him; Ray really cared about the Club. Once you did get
to know him, the gruffness was just a facade (he
reminded me a lot of my Grandfather that way)
My first major dealings with Ray had to do with
the Relay. He was always looking for articles (things
haven’t changed much) and I bit. This was all during
the cusp of the PC computer era (the mid 80's) and
Ray experimented a lot in computer publishing (a big
step up from the paste-up days) and the putting the
Club member data into a database. When Ray gave up
the Relay, it became my turn and I got a lot of help and
advice (as well as that clunky database program)
Ray was highly involved in the Fleamarket as
the Registration Chair after our move to the Pavilion.
Again, he introduced computers into the process.
Diane, my wife, spent her first days as a fleamarket
worker Ray's guidance. When he stepped down from
that, Diane was able to step in.
I remember when the ARRL decided to publish
the design of the "Mike & Keyer" but wanted a printed
circuit board to be available. Ray stepped up, and
using computer layout software, he produced one and
even paid to have some made up which he then tried
to sell in kits. I doubt he ever made his money back but
he had fun and learned a lot.
Ray used to stop by our house (with his wife
Eleanor) when we lived in downtown Kent for social
visits. The conversation frequently drifted to making the
fleamarket the "Dayton of the West" and getting the
Club a permanent Home/Clubhouse. Alas, over the
past decade Ray drifted away and we haven't talked in
years though Diane and I have wondered frequently
how he was doing (especially around Fleamarket time).
I still have visions of him upstairs at his house
surrounding by computers and stacks of
Which reminds me, Ray used to perform paper
drives back when paper was worth something. He
would try to get club members to bring newspaper in
on Club meeting day and then took it down for
recycling. For a while, there was money in it but even
Ray’s big truck couldn’t haul enough to make it
worthwhile in the end.
Ray was chairman of the Education Committee and made
sure there were classes available to help new hams get
One last thing. Check the signature in your
booklet of bylaws. You’ll find Ray’s signature there in
the last revision. Ray always made sure the bylaws got
a regular scrubbing every couple years and usually ran
the committee. Some of us wondered if it was worth all
that but you could never doubt Ray’s willingness to
jump in and volunteer.
Ray, WA7EKH, became a silent key October 15, 2007.