Ron Roden - G4GKO passed away. A great loss to the Amateur Radio Community

Ron (SK)

Ron Roden G4GKO passed away on March 28th, 2004
- A great loss to the Amateur Radio community! -

It is with great sadness and deep sorrow, that the Amateur Radio community learned of Ron Roden’s death. He passed away evening March 28th, 2004, at the age of 80 years. IARU Monitoring System and all its members mourn for the great loss. Ron was the Co-ordinator of DARC MONITORING SYSTEM Intruder Watch of Region 1 from 1990 to 2002.

Ron Roden - G4GKORon Roden was born on January 27, 1924 in the city of Cardiff, South Wales. He was a student at Cardiff High School, and later became a telecommunications engineer. During World War II he served as a cable and telecommunications engineer on various cable ships to position and repair deep sea cables. During one of his cable jobs in Brazil he met a Brazilian girl, Ines, who then was studying Music and Philosophy in Sao Paulo. In 1948 they married, and Ron took his wife to England.

During the following years we see Ron on various locations around the globe: Starting as an Assistant Engineer he then became a Chief Engineer and finally General Manager of Cable & Wireless Corporation. He was stationed in Antarctica, Ascension Island, Bermuda, Cameroon, Canada, Falkland Islands, Gibraltar, Fiji, Malaysia, New Zealand, Singapore, and USA. His job was always dealing with telecommunications, either on short waves or satellite communication.

G4GKO QSL cardWhenever he had some time left he was active with his radio rig: VP8OA, VP9IR, ZB2DN, ZD8RR, and ON8IV were some of his calls. Also to Ron, being of the Hebrew faith, the Israel Amateur Radio Society gave him an official ham radio "call sign of honour", 4X8RR, and he held a Honorary Membership of IARC in Israel. Also he represented the IARC in international ham conventions and affairs.

For his outstanding service and dedicated work he received important medals, decorations, and orders. He was even introduced to H.M. Queen Elizabeth II.

After his retirement in 1990 he was appointed Coordinator for Region 1 of the IARU Monitoring System. As in his lifetime job he again had to do a lot of important tasks: By means of Packet Radio and later by Internet he consequently welded together the various national amateur radio organizations of Region 1. Internet was an excellent tool for him to create an efficient monitoring system. I remember his stirring appeals to non-active "lazy" organisations within Region 1. He used to inform the members of "his" Monitoring System by monthly newsletters. These "Monthly Newsletters" were the highlight of his dedicated work. He quickly executed "combined actions" against intruders via WWW by alerting many intruder watches within minutes. I remember well the successful action against the Swiss watch makers "Swatch" who wanted to launch a satellite with a downlink on ham radio frequencies. These actions, of course, took a lot of his spare time. So, after 12 years of service in the Monitoring System he stood down in order to have more time with his family.

In November 2002 at the IARU conference held in San Marino Ron was presented an Award recognizing his outstanding service for the Monitoring System because he and his staff of national intruder watch coordinators abroad had worked diligently to monitor, identify, and initiate steps leading to the removal of non-amateur stations causing harmful interference to the amateur radio service.

Ron’s hard work, dedication and high standards were largely responsible for making the Region 1 Monitoring System as strong and active as it is today. Ron’s high interest in Amateur Radio and his concern and vigilance about intrusions into our bands were an inspiration to all dedicated hams. His encouragement and interest in our work will truly be missed.


Let us follow his fine example and continue this important work to make our hobby more enjoyable for all.

Wolfgang Hadel, DK2OM

Ulrich Bihlmayer, DJ9KR / DL0IW
Intruder Watch Germany and PTT Liaison Officer