Friday, August 10, 2018

Amateur Satellite Pioneer Bill Tynan, W3XO, SK

Bill Tynan, W3XO, at the 1997 AMSAT
Satellite Symposium in Toronto.
(CQ archive photo)
Bill Tynan, W3XO, a founding member and director of AMSAT and former VHF editor of QST magazine, became a Silent Key on August 7 at age 91. According to the AMSAT News Service, Bill's radio career began during World War II as an operator in WERS, the War Emergency Radio Service, the only way hams at the time could get on the air.

In 1969, Bill was part of the Washington, DC-based group (also including former CQ Propagation Editor George Jacobs, W3ASK) that formed the Radio Amateur Satellite Corporation - AMSAT - to pick up the mantle of leading development of the amateur satellite program from Project OSCAR, which had built and launched the first Orbiting Satellites Carrying Amateur Radio. Bill was a charter member of AMSAT's board of directors and served as the organization's president from 1991 to 1998. He was also very active in all forms of VHF/UHF activity and wrote QST''s "World Above 50 MHz" column for 18 years. Bill was also Dayton's "Amateur of the Year" in 1996 and received the Barry Goldwater Award from the Radio Club of America in 2012.

For the past 20+ years, Bill has also served as the OSCAR number administrator, certifying that recently-launched satellites met the requirements for receiving an OSCAR number and issuing them to qualifying "birds." Bill only recently stepped down from this position due to failing health. The family asks that anyone wishing to do so make a donation in Bill's name to the charity of his/her choice.