Author Topic: Dave Hawke, KQ1L, SK  (Read 1194 times)

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Offline W1RC

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Dave Hawke, KQ1L, SK
« on: May 11, 2023, 03:15:30 AM »
Dave Hawke, KQ1L, became a Silent Key on Wednesday May 10th 2023. He was 82. A remarkable individual, Dave was from Boothbay Harbor Maine. He spoke with that delightful "Down East" brogue. A humble, unassuming man, Dave told everyone he always lived in Maine except for the years he "went to engineering school in Massachusetts". It was only later we found out that "engineering school" was M I T. From what I gather he was involved in several high level projects while he was there but, of course, he never spoke of this.
Dave was a repeater guy. He built an analog repeater network that covered most of the state of Maine which is no small task when you understand how big Maine is. With the advent of digital radios Dave did it again, so now there are both FM and DMR networks covering the state. Dave paid for this equipment out of pocket and refused to accept donations.
During his long career Dave worked for the Maine State Police and Central Maine Power building their repeater networks. Later he was the Kennebec County computer guy and ran a server farm from his cellar on Cony Street in Augusta. Any amateur radio club or organization could have space on his server at no cost. That included NEAR-Fest. I offered him the same amount that any other company would charge but Dave wouldn't hear of it. I finally was able to get him to accept hotel rooms so he and his XYL Brenda, K1YFY, could stay in comfort at Deerfield and Boxborough MA ARRL conventions every year.  It made me happy to see them attending these events and having a good time,
Dave worked into his eighties and even continued to ride his beloved motorcycle taking trips all over the Northeast with Brenda. He only stopped when his illness became debilitating. He beat it the first round but it reappeared last fall and claimed him yesterday. It is a great loss for the many who knew and loved him. I miss him already.
May he rest in peace.
NEAR-Fest XXXIV will be dedicated to Dave's memory.  There will be a celebration of Dave's life at Deerfield on Friday, October 13th 2023 at 5:00PM.  Please visit our web site for details.
Sadly submitted,
Michael Crestohl, W1RC

Offline KB1NZN

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Re: Dave Hawke, KQ1L, SK
« Reply #1 on: May 11, 2023, 02:14:42 PM »
I didn't know him super well, but enough to know that he was the "the mastermind" who quietly built and maintained, for DECADES, much of Maine's amateur radio repeater, APRS and digital radio infrastructure. As MrMike said, at mostly his own expense. He still lives online, at his web site http://kq1l.com which continues to have a wealth of information about many tech facets of Amateur Radio.

He was thrown a challenge back around 2015 or so (I think, don't remember exactly what he told me) that no one could build a home solar system that would be capable of supplying all the power needed to run a household. Always up for any technical challenge, Dave built a whole-home solar power network complete with storage that allows the system to power his household 24 hours per day, unlike many others that operate only during the daytime when there is solar energy. He built the system and a custom web site to monitor its status, http://www.conysolar.com which is still active today. As I write this it is generating 6400 watts of power, 4400 of which is being fed to the grid and over 1100w "in the bank". Of course he had a backup generator too and separate battery systems for AC power (via an inverter) and DC power.

Don't tell Dave it couldn't be done.

One of the best tech minds and genuinely good people has left us, and it is a huge loss.

-Ben

UPDATE:  Unfortunately it appears that all the web sites referenced above are now offline. Not surprising, but sad.






Offline W1RC

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Re: Dave Hawke, KQ1L, SK
« Reply #2 on: May 12, 2023, 12:42:00 AM »
Bill Barber <ne1b.c6awb@gmail.com> wrote on May 10 09:16PM -0400

It is with great sadness that I mention the passing of Dave Hawke, KQ1L, of Augusta, Maine.
I met Dave back in late 1976 when he was the Chief Radio Technician at Maine State Police HQ in Augusta. We traveled to many sites throughout the State, as we were then building the Statewide VHF network. Later in the mid-80's again we crossed paths at Central Maine Power. Finally, during the last dozen years, we have been building the Amateur DMR networks around New England. Dave was a brilliant engineer and a doer. He made things happen and was very modest. He built the analog FM and APRS networks in Maine also.The amateur community will miss him. Please extend condolences to Brenda and Dave's family. More information will be provided on the NEAR-fest website: https://near-fest.com/come-to-near-fest
 
RIP my friend Dave,
 
Bill, NE1B