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RTTY Contesting Stalwart Ron Stailey, K5DJ, SK


Ron Stailey, K5DJ (ex-AB5KD), of Farmington, New Mexico — a major player in the 1990s amateur radio RTTY scene — died on November 25. An ARRL Life Member, he was 75.

“Ron dominated the RTTY contesting world in the late 1990s,” said Jay Townsend, WS7I. Stailey lived in Texas at the time. “Ron really enjoyed RTTY operating. When Wayne Wright, W5XD, a fellow resident of Round Rock, Texas, began developing one of the first Windows-based computer logging programs, Ron was an early adopter, and helped champion its tight integration with the state-of-the-art RTTY terminal hardware of the time.”

Stailey became the distributor of WriteLog. Ron’s first RTTY contest from the W5KFT Ranch Station was the 1996 ARRL RTTY Roundup, in which he operated under his own call sign, AB5KD, in the single operator, high power category. It was his first of five consecutive W/VE victories. It was also the first of five consecutive record scores in that category of the ARRL RTTY Roundup.

Stailey is credited with creating (with WS7I) the CQ World Wide RTTY WPX Contest and the North American QSO Party RTTY event. He served as RTTY Journal’s contest columnist and hosted the RTTY Contesters Banquet in Dayton for many years.