May 9, 2007
graduated high school in June 1979, joined the Air Force in June
as a diesel engine mechanic.
I ended up in the “Refueling Maintenance Shop”, which
is basically maintaining the 5,000 gal fuel trucks that fuel the
aircraft on the flight line.
It was lots of fun, and I learned a lot about the fuel
I spent 8 years active duty going around the world, for
Uncle Sam, to different bases, playing with fuel trucks.
Learned a lot about what I DID
have, from people who DIDN’T
Anyway, it was a great growing up experience.
was discharged from the Air Force in October of 1987, moved out
to southern cal. to live with my brother.
Lived with him, till he got hitched, GEEZ,
:), left me out in the cold, ha ha!!
By that time, I was dating my wife, Susan.
Back to her in a minute….
from the A.F. in 1987, I kind of missed the camaraderie of the
military, sooooo, my dad, convinced me to join the Air Guard, my
active duty time would all count for retirement, so I did.
BEST advice I
ever got. Joined
the Air Guard in Costa Mesa, by the O.C. fairgrounds.
Worked for them, as a civilian, for 13 years, in the
vehicle maintenance shop, maintaining the fleet.
So IF you ever
go south on the 55 Freeway, just north of the fairgrounds, just
look to your right, you may notice a large log periodic
horizontally polarized 13 element antenna just above the tree
line, that’s us.
We are a satellite, wideband mobile communications unit.
AND, just in
case your wondering, YES,
that log periodic antenna used to belong to Senator Barry
It is 80 ft high, mounted on a tri-mast, about 3 ft in
diameter, and it talks great.
We don’t use it anymore, unless there is a natural
Anyway, we have a fleet of army trucks that we transport
mobile radio, satellite gear out to anywhere in the world, set
up shop and play radio, kind of like ham “field day”.
Sooo, I was retired, by the guard in 2003.
And yes, I will get a retirement when I’m 62….: )
back to Susan.
Met her about 9 years ago, at the country dance hall that
She came with a friend of hers (female type
: ), and the rest is history, couldn’t get rid of her,
so I married her, ha ha!!
We have no children, well ok, 2 cats, sambo, the male,
boo boo (angel), the female.
I have now joined the “Operating Engineers”, which in my
view, is a fancy title for “heavy equipment operator” ha
Anyway, I am currently working on my crane certification.
Soooo, eventually I will be “operating” those “big
erector sets”(Cranes), you see when a TALL building is being built.
If you’re afraid of heights, it’s not for you.
have been riding since 1980.
I started with a 1981 Kawasaki 440ltd, street cruiser,
back in Abilene, Texas.
Actually, I started with a 10 speed bicycle. I
installed a carrier rack, put a m/c battery on it, and mounted a
Radio Shack 40 channel AM CB on the handlebars, with a 6 ft
Firestik antenna mounted off the back of the rear sprocket.
laugh, talked to station in Midland, Tx., about 150 miles away,
one afternoon, while riding back to the barracks from work.
Then, in 1983, got orders to Holloman AFB, in New Mexico,
upgraded to a 1983 Kawasaki 750ltd, same as the 440ltd, but
Turned them both into dressers.
In 1985, while still in New Mexico, upgraded to my first
used ’85 Goldwing, it was burgundy, had 130 miles on it.
Put 133,000 miles on it.
Great bike, although I did replace the stator on it (4)
I still like the style of that bike better that any of
the newer Goldwings I’ve owned. I then upgraded to a shiny new
blue 1992 Aspencade.
I rode it across country to attend the N.C.O. Academy in
the state of Tennessee, where I had a rear tire blowout, at 75
miles an hour, it fishtailed on me and we rolled a few times,
totaled it. Other than a few cuts and bruises, I was very lucky.
It had about 97,000 miles on it.
Got my last Goldwing in 1995. Put about 70,000 miles on
it before I “upgraded” ha ha ha!! to my
current 2005, black H.D. Ultra Classic.
Always wanted a Harley.
It ain’t no Goldwing, but I love it. Yes, I do have
radio gear on it.
I am currently running a Yaesu 8100 mobile on it.
The head display is on the top of the batwing dashboard,
and the rest of it is in the trunk, along with the APRS gear (Tinytrak
3), thanks to Ray & Chuck.
Both are attached to the fiberglass inner lining, by
velcro, that bolts to the trunk.
Both APRS & rhino killer (Comet HP32FHN), are mounted
on the carrier rack.
Also have a neat set of strobe lights that are mounted on
the front & back of the motorcycle, when I work the various
have been a member of MARC, since it’s beginning.
I’m not really a club type of guy, but I have NEVER
worked with a better bunch of folks than those of the MARC
They are both friendly & professional…
that’s a lot of typing, I guess that’s it for me…….see
ya down the road…..
Jim Rodrigues KC6OAU