Our spotlight this week is on Frank Brodale, AGØM, another longtime ARMS member. Frank was first licensed
in 1957 as KNØKGQ as a Novice Class licensee. In 2007 he celebrates 50 years of amateur radio, the
same year that ARMS celebrates its 50th anniversary. Upon upgrading, he dropped the "N"
and became KØKGQ. Today he hold the Amateur Extra Class license.
Frank describes the AGØM station as a Heinz 57 variety of about every manufacturer of amateur
equipment except Collins (which he hopes to have someday). His main station is a Kenwood TS-440S which
drives a Drake L4B (throttled down to 500 watts) into a 5-element Hy-Gain TH-5 at 50 feet. He also has
a vintage Hallicrafters SX-100 and SR-150, a Heathkit DX-60 with matching VFO and receiver, a Tempo One,
and a Kenwood TS-130S with a Hustler antenna for the mobile. Other station antennas in addition to the
TH-5 include a full-wave loop on 80 meters, a Hy-Gain 40/160 trap dipole, WARC dipoles, and a two-meter
Isopole above the beam.
Frank enjoys DXing and contesting and has had several top scores for the State of Iowa. He also enjoys
operating vintage equipment such as his Hallicrafters and Heathkits, and enjoys building antennas. He
once built a five-element monster quad, which he says was the best antenna he ever had--at least until it
iced up and came down. In recent years his major enjoyment has been in talking with his Christian brothers
and sisters on the ARMS Christian Fellowship Net and sharing Christ via amateur radio.
AGØM operating awards include DXCC (200/135), WAC, and WAS on 75, 40, and 20 meters (and closing in on
15 and 10 meters). Twice he placed first for the Iowa Section in the ARRL International DX Contest, once
for 10 meters and once for 15 meters. He was also first place for the 10th call area in a
Ten-Ten International Summer QSO contest.
Frank joined ARMS in 1973 and has been an active member. He designed the ARMS membership certificate a
few years back and served as the Midwest ARMS director. He still calls the Midwest ARMS Net on the
2nd and 4th Saturdays. He also sends out birthday geetings to ARMS members and
certificates to those who check into three or more ARMS Nets at least three times on each net. In this
regard, Frank reminds us to e-mail him and he will send the certificate.
Professionally, Frank worked in grocery stores through high school and junior college. He was in the
U.S. Army for a couple years during the Vietnam War and served with the 101st Airborne
Division in helicopter maintenance. He went to electronics school after the Army and achieved a First
Class Radiotelephone license. He was employed at Collins Radio in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, when Collins
laid off thousands of employees around 1970. He then decided the Lord didn't want him spending his life
as an electronics technician, so he worked another 12 years in grocery stores.
At the age of 42 Frank went back to college, after taking 20 years off between his sophmore and junior
years. After graduating with a degree in Psychology, he went on the do graduate work in the same field.
He then worked at the Cherokee Mental Health Institute for 17 years before retiring a couple of years ago.
He wore many hats at the institute and was in charge of various programs, but finished working as a social
worker and teaching symptom management classes to the patients. He feels God had been preparing him for
years to do that work and reflect God's love to the patients. Many of the patients thought he was the
Frank is married to Vicky. He spied her by the fish counter one evening in the grocery store and he says
she was the catch of a lifetime. Along with his faith, Vicky is the rock of his life. Together they
have one son, Matthew, who is currently studying at the University of Iowa.
Church activities are a big part of Frank's life. He has served as church president, taught sunday school,
chaired committees, etc. Currently he is active in video taping church services and taking them to nursing
homes and shut-ins. He is also active in small group Bible studies, men's fellowship and maintaining the
church nativity scene and Thanksgiving decorations.
John 3:16 is Frank's favorite Bible verse. "For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only
Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life" (NIV).
Franks shares these thoughts with the ARMS membership. "My Christian faith has grown with the fellowship
on the ARMS Net. Checking into the net each day is a great way to start the day. The scriptures presented and
testimonies rendered have been inspiring. I hope that my comments have also been reinforcing to the walk of
faith in the lives of others."
[ POSTED ON 26-FEB-2006; 23-MAR-2007 ]