Dieter Schliemann, KX4Y (SK)
Dieter Schliemann, KX4Y, of Scottsboro, Alabama, passed February 9 after a battle with cancer. He was 68. According to Amateur Radio on the International Space Station (ARISS) International Chairman Frank H. Bauer, KA3HDO, Schliemann was instrumental in leading and supporting many key activities in AMSAT and on the ARISS program. "Those that knew Dieter recognized that he was a 'class act,'" Bauer said, "a great gentleman and colleague who will be sorely missed by all."
Schliemann, an ARRL Life Member, was involved with ARISS, leading the school contact IRLP/EchoLink initiative. Through this Amateur Radio VOIP system, Bauer said Schliemann and his team "substantially extended our reach of the school contacts. And through his efforts, tens of thousands of school students and ham radio operators, worldwide, could listen to other school contacts, enhancing education and giving all a better understanding of what it is like to live and work on ISS. Dieter's diplomacy, teambuilding skills and attention to the details were impeccable and were well respected within the team. He rose to the challenge when I asked him to lead the IRLP/EchoLink team. At the time, there were strong, divergent opinions on the use of IRLP and EchoLink on ARISS. He singlehandedly developed a cohesive team that is producing great results and is enjoying working together."
Bauer said that Schliemann had been fighting cancer for a few years: "A month ago, all of us thought he was on the road to recovery. Unfortunately, that did not come to pass. Through it all, Dieter remained the gentle, caring person that we all have grown to love. During his illness, he remained dedicated to his AMSAT and ARISS causes and responsibilities. When he received the surprising news from the doctors that he had only two weeks to live and despite being weak from a long hospitalization, Dieter got on e-mail and worked on a transition plan to ensure that IRLP/EchoLink capabilities on ARISS continues. What a great, compassionate, loving human being."
Rosalie White, K1STO, fondly remembered Schliemann. "As team members reported on what a great person Dieter was, and the ways he had helped ARISS, more and more came to light regarding so many things he had accomplished without many others knowing," she said. "He shunned the spotlight, yet he quietly took the initiative, never shying away from solving problems. The ARISS Team will miss Dieter terribly -- a wonderful friend and dedicated volunteer."