Well-Known Yukon Ham J Allen, VY1JA, is Stepping Away from Amateur Radio
From ARRL de WD1CKS@WLARB to QST on Tuesday, September 17, 2019 16:42:08
Well-known Canadian radio amateur J Allen, VY1JA, of Whitehorse, Yukon Territory, has announced that he's retiring from ham radio, citing long-term health issues and hearing loss. The familiar VY1JA call sign also has been retired. Allen will begin dismantling his station and antennas as early as this weekend. His last contact was with KA4UPI on September 14. He has uploaded his logs to Logbook of The World (LoTW) and sent copies to his QSL managers.
"After approximately 30 years of operation and over 110,000 contacts, the station VY1JA has gone QRT for operator health reasons effective 2019-09-14," Allen said on his QRZ.com profile. "All gear and antennas are for sale."
For years, VY1JA was an eagerly sought-after multiplier in the ARRL November Sweepstakes and other events, as well as a needed zone in DX contests. In recent years, as Allen has begun to step away from regular on-the-air appearances, his station has been operated remotely as VY1AAA by a team of Canadian-licensed operators located in the US. Allen said VY1AAA operation would cease on September 22.
Gerry Hull, W1VE/VE1RM, who has coordinated VY1AAA operations, told ARRL that he's been searching over the past 6 months for another Northern Territories station that would be willing to host remote operation.
"The VY1AAA team is greatly saddened by this turn of events," Hull said. "Hams around the world will surely miss J and the VY1AAA team on the bands. J has been an incredible friend and mentor. Now it is time for us to help him off the air." Hull said that over the past 4 years, the remotely operated station has logged more than 35,000 contacts, and QSL requests will continue to be honored. He invited inquiries via email.
Allen thanked Hull for "his tireless efforts to keep YT/NT/VY1 on the air throughout the years of his operation and direction of remote operations."
Hull said he will lead a final push to make contacts this week as VY1AAA, before Allen dismantles his station. He expects to be on the air in the evening hours this week and on Saturday, if possible, mostly on 20 meters, CW, and SSB.
Hull said Geoffrey Burns, NE3K, will be the new QSL Manager for VY1AAA, XO1X, and XK150YUKON.