A word or two from the Prez
Friday, March 2, 2012, is a day that will long be remembered in Southern Indiana and neighboring Kentucky. Early reports of a tornado that left six Indiana counties a federally declared major disaster area figuratively placed the small town of Henryville, Indiana, on the national map . . . ironically, just hours after the twister literally wiped it away.
Although no mention of amateur radio operator assistance has been reflected in the Indianapolis media, we know that we – ham operators – were there.
Communications support during disasters, as well as with relief efforts that follow, is the mainstay of amateur radio. It's what we do, and we share a proud and remarkable history on that point. We've done much to aid towns, cities and neighborhoods in the face and wake of major catastrophes, and this brings cause to mention the Legion's
National Emergency Fund.
Every member of TALARC should be thoroughly familiar with the NEF program. Our ability to "reach out" over the airwaves gives us an opportunity to provide important information to authorities, who in turn can provide aid to Legionnaires and their families displaced or evacuated from their homes due to damages sustained by a declared natural disaster. NEF assistance is available to Legion members, who can apply for a grant up to $1,500 to cover housing costs, food and clothing. Legion posts can apply for a grant up to $5,000. More information about NEF is available at www.legion.org/emergency .
Inaugural Special Event
The American Legion Amateur Radio Club station, K9TAL, will operate as a special event station Thursday, Friday and Saturday, March 15 - 17, to commemorate the 93rd birthday of The American Legion.
This is our chance to let the amateur world know about K9TAL and why the Legion is involved with the "hobby," and to encourage eligible veterans who are not members to join us in service to the community, state and nation through amateur radio.
Hours of operation are 1000 to 1600 EDT [1400 to 2000 UTC] on the twenty meter band, about 14.270 MHz. Simultaneously, K9TAL will operate on the two meter band at 146.46 MHz simplex, and on IRLP Node 4816.
A special commemorative certificate will be provided to all stations that work K9TAL during that period. For the certificate, please mail a SASE (9x12) after successful QSO, to The American Legion Amateur Radio Club, ATTN: Joe March, P.O. Box 1055, Indianapolis, IN 46206.
Any TALARC members in the Indianapolis area are welcome to operate the National Headquarters station for this event. Contact Joe – KJ9M – at firstname.lastname@example.org  to sign up or get more information.
March 10 and 11 Nets
The latest Club nets that operated on the weekend of March 10-11, 2012, did a little better this go round than last. Bill, NZ9S, transmitting from his station north of Indianapolis and acting as net control for VHF IRLP, logged about a dozen stations.
Craig, W3CRR, net control for the HF net and transmitting out of Silver Spring, Md., with the aid of relay station KI0CW, Bill, in Dell Rapids, S.D., logged more than 30 stations in 12 states on 20 meters last Sunday. More information on TALARC nets will be available at www.legion.org/hamradio .
TALARC membership continues to grow with every mention of our call-sign by us and by major amateur radio publications and websites. As of March 13, 506 Legion family members have joined the club. Help make and keep us visible, inside and out, by reporting your amateur radio club's activities and events – at every opportunity – to your post and the media in your area. Stay up-to-date with what's happening among Legion amateurs by participating in the email discussion forum on the TALARC Web page (www.legion.org/hamradio ). Just click on "Ham Radio Forum" at the left side of the page to enter or begin a discussion thread on any club-related topic. Email email@example.com  with any questions.
Marty Justis, W9WMJ