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ARRL Special Bulletin ARLX007 (2002)

ARLX007 Former FCC Official A. Prose Walker, W4BW, SK

QST de W1AW  
Special Bulletin 7  ARLX007
From ARRL Headquarters  
Newington CT  September 27, 2002
To all radio amateurs 

ARLX007 Former FCC Official A. Prose Walker, W4BW, SK

Former FCC official A. Prose Walker, W4BW, the man some consider the
godfather of the so-called ''WARC bands''--30, 17 and 12 meters--died
August 8 following a brief illness. He was 92. Word of his death
reached ARRL Headquarters this month.

Walker, who headed the FCC Amateur and Citizens Division from 1971
until 1975, made the initial proposal for three new amateur
allocations at 10, 18 and 24 MHz during an International Amateur
Radio Club (4U1ITU) meeting in Geneva in 1972. Later, he organized
and chaired the US preparatory committee for the Amateur
Service--the Advisory Committee of Amateur Radio--which took the
initial steps to turn the idea into reality at the 1979 World
Administrative Radio Conference. The committee also included former
ARRL General Manager Richard L. Baldwin, W1RU, who said this week
that he was greatly saddened to learn of Walker's passing.

''One of my fondest memories of WARC 79 was the pleasure and the
challenge of working with Prose in preparing for that conference,''
Baldwin said. ''He was a stalwart supporter of the Amateur Service,
and few amateurs realize how very much they owe to him.''

Walker's most recent recognition came at Dayton Hamvention 2000,
when he was recognized with a special achievement award, an honor
his daughter, Helen Herman, said he coveted among many other more
prestigious awards. The award recognized his work in obtaining the
new amateur allocations more than two decades earlier.

An ARRL Life Member and a licensee since the 1920s, Walker was an
enthusiastic amateur who remained quite active on the air until
shortly before his death. Only a few months before he died, he
bought a state-of-the-art transceiver and reveled in becoming
acquainted with its many features. Walker's favorite operating mode
was CW, and he was a frequent visitor on the bands he'd help create.

A native of Ohio, Walker's career took a number of turns, including
a stint as a high school teacher, but his primary contributions were
in the fields of communications and engineering. He did two tours
with the FCC and also worked for the National Association of
Broadcasters and Collins Radio Company.

During his career, Walker earned a global reputation for
participation and leadership within the International
Telecommunication Union (ITU). He was the leading member of the US
delegation at more than 20 international conferences.

ARRL Chief Executive Officer David Sumner, K1ZZ, knew Walker and
occasionally encountered him on the air. ''The careers of some radio
amateurs are so long and so rich that they bridge generations,''
Sumner said. ''Prose was among these.''

Walker retired to Florida, but after his wife Ellanie died in 1999,
he moved to Rochester, New York, to be near his daughter, Helen. A
memorial service will be held later this year.


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