The G4UZN Historic QSL Collection

Subtitle

The Jinny Beyer Story - Page Two                                   

The 9N1MM Story

  " It seems that at one time it was the Ministry of Tourism that handled radio licensing in Nepal since the majority of applications for radio licences came from mountain climbers who needed VHF communications to stay in touch with their support bases further down the mountain.

Father Moran's school, St. Xaviers, was the finest primary school in the land and every Nepali of a certain social status was hoping that his children could attend the school, whether they happened to be Catholics or not. However, Father Moran admitted children based solely on merit. If they did not pass the entrance examination there was no way they could get into the school, no matter who their parents were or what back-channel efforts were attempted.

The Minister of Tourism's son failed the test and was not admitted to St. Xavier's. Not long thereafter Father Moran's ham licence came due for renewal. It was made clear to Father Moran that once the Minister's son was admitted to St. Xavier's Father Moran's ham licence would be renewed and not before. Father Moran refused to play the game and went off the air.

Father Moran moved in the highest circles in Nepal and his devotion to his ham radio hobby was well known at the highest levels of Nepali society. One night at a party the King himself asked Father Moran how that ham radio hobby of his was going. Father Moran replied that unfortunately he had not been able to engage in his ham radio activities lately because the Minister of Tourism had not seen fit to renew his licence.

The very next morning, Father Moran's phone rang and he answered to find a frantic Minister of Tourism on the other end begging Father Moran to please come down immediately and pick up his renewed Amateur Radio licence. "   (thanks K3ZO)

(American Ambassador Carol Laise initially liased with Ambassador Bunker in Viet Nam from Father Moran's station; Moran's school was some way out of town, and when Jinny Beyer received her licence was able to talk from her station; Jinny Beyer's station will have been fairly close to the American Embassy; there was a VHF radio link between Moran's station and the Embassy, but this for technical reasons was not so easy).

 

The Viet Nam Story

This is the story of the Viet Nam - Nepal link.

John "Chester" Lunsford W4EVG/XV5AC/HS1AIV was Department of State Communications Technician in Viet Nam.

"Chester was the person principally responsible for getting Viet Nam back on the air in 1971, after a long absence from the amateur bands, thanks to arranging high level intervention on his behalf by U.S. Ambassador Ellsworth Bunker, who found that Amateur Radio was the only way he, stationed in Viet Nam, could communicate by voice with his wife, Carol Laise, who was the U.S. Ambasador to Nepal at the time. There was no telephone service between Viet Nam and Nepal in those days.

Working quietly, Lunsford managed to equip the legendary Father Moran, 9N1MM, with a VHF link from Father Moran's shack to the American Embassy in Kathmandu. Utilising a MARS station at Ton Son Nhut Air Base in Saigon on the amateur bands as XV5AC, Chester linked Ambassador Bunker with his wife by phone patch with Kathmandu through Father Moran on 14320, the South East Asia Net frequency.

When Ambassador Bunker said "John, that was great, when can we do it again?" Chester answered that there was one problem - he had no Vietnamese ham radio license. Ambassador Bunker called the Embassy's Adminstrative Counsellor into his office and in short order Chester had his license and Ambassador Bunker had his weekly chit-chat with his wife.

There was still one problem - Viet Nam remained on the ITU banned list so U.S. hams were not legally able to work XV5AC. On a brief official trip back to Washington, Chester visited the then-FCC Chief Engineer and explained the situation. The problem was soon resolved" (K3ZO)

 

 

 Thanks for the above information provided by Jinny Beyer herself, and Fred Laun K3ZO

 

 

QSL cards from the G4UZN Collection