Author Topic: Arleen Kaltman, KF6LAF, SK!  (Read 5899 times)

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Offline W1RC

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Arleen Kaltman, KF6LAF, SK!
« on: March 17, 2008, 10:17:56 AM »
It is with deep regret and sadness that I announce to you that a true friend and devoted supporter of NEAR-Fest, Arleen Kaltman, KF6LAF, passed away March 16th, 2008, in Los Angeles California.  The docs kept her comfortable the last days and she left us peacefully.  Arleen's devoted husband Neil was with her when she signed off for the last time. 


Neil and Arleen were true friends and supporters of NEAR-Fest from Day 1.  They drove from Los Angeles California (3,000 miles each way) so they could be with us at NEAR-Fest I and again for NEAR-Fest II in 2007.  Neil gives us first refusal on goodies he then takes to Dayton so we get the first shot at the treasures!  Last October we presented them both with Lifetime Passes to NEAR-Fest for their dedication.  I regret that Arleen will not be able to use hers.

Neil reports that since he retired several years ago, he and Arleen have been attending a large number of hamfests all over the USA every year.  They are well-known and popular at events from California to New England, from the Pacific Northwest to Orlando, as well as Texas, Arizona and of course Dayton.  Since attending NEAR-Fest I last May they have been enthusiastically boosting NEAR-Fest by wearing their official NEAR-Fest 'T' shirts proudly at every 'fest they attend and telling all who would listen how great it is.  Neil and Arleen attended the ARRL New England Convention at Boxborough three times since 2002 and agree that the hamfests (and the radio amateurs too) in New England are "the best in the country".

It will be impossible to forget the sight of Arleen whizzing around the flea market in her "hot-rod" wheelchair bearing the legend "Rotten Old Lady", or standing watch over their table of wonderous radio goodies, Morse keys and the like.  Her sense of humor was very unique and she was the master of the pun and double entendre.


I took this picture of Arleen at Boxborough in 2002 which was the first hamfest they attended in New England.  They never missed one after that.  It is my favorite photo of her.

I have known Neil and Arleen for over 25 years.  They were "inseparable".  Neil told me that Arleen asked him not to give up his love of hamfesting and flea marketing after she is gone.  He was with us at NEAR-Fest III and s planning on attending NEAR-Fest IV as well as Boxborough in August.   I always look forward to seeing my old friend Neil again but am saddened to know that Arleen will not be with him. 

Neil and Arleen have been a part of NEAR-Fest since the beginning.  I am so glad that she was able to be with us for NEARFEST I and II especially knowing how much she enjoyed herself at our hamfest.  It is not quite the same without her presence.  We shall always remember the "Rotton Old Lady" and miss her terribly.

Our condolences and sadness goes out to Neil and his family on a loss that is shared by us all.