Past ARRL Roanoke Division Director Dennis Bodson, W4PWF, of Arlington, Virginia, died on July 1. He would have turned 77 this month. Bodson had been recovering from recent surgery, but his death was unexpected.
An ARRL Life Member, Bodson announced his retirement from the ARRL Board of Directors during the Board’s 2015 Annual Meeting. Fellow Board members gave Bodson a standing ovation in recognition of his years of service to the League, and they elected him as an Honorary Vice President. Earlier in the meeting, then-ARRL CEO David Sumner, K1ZZ, presented Bodson with his 60-year ARRL membership certificate. Sumner said he was shocked and saddened to learn of Bodson’s passing.
“His service as Roanoke Division Vice Director and Director met a standard of common sense and loyalty to the ARRL that in my experience has been seldom matched and never exceeded,” Sumner said.
Bodson served the League for more than 20 years — as Roanoke Division Vice Director from 1993 through 2000, and as Director from 2001 until he stepped down from the Board. He served on the Ethics and Elections, Programs and Services, Administration and Finance, and Executive committees. He also was the first chairman of the Board’s Electromagnetic Compatibility (EMC) Committee, and Past ARRL President Kay Craigie, N3KN, said Bodson’s greatest contribution to the ARRL stemmed from his work on that panel.
“The committee’s new, proactive stance made it possible to prevent and avoid what would have been a number of thorny problems for Amateur Radio operators and to promptly address others,” Craigie said. “Dennis never got the credit he deserved for his leadership of this committee, because a bullet that’s dodged doesn’t make the headlines.”
“In addition to his technical wisdom,” she continued, “Dennis was a delightful colleague and a raconteur. His sense of humor was sly, dry, and sharp, and no bush ever died from his beating around it. He always had something insightful and/or funny to say.”
Craigie said that Bodson was the Director when she moved into the Roanoke Division 9 years ago, “and I was proud to be his constituent,” she said.
Roanoke Division Vice Director Bill Morine, N2COP, served previously as North Carolina Section Manager. “When I was a Section Manager, I was pleased and amazed at the level of continued support I received from Dennis when he was Roanoke Division Director,” Morine said.
An electrical engineer and fellow of both the IEEE and the Radio Club of America, Bodson retired in 1998 as Chief of the Office of Technology and Standards of the National Communications System (NCS), US government agency. He occasionally contributed to QST and QEX. “In 1986 he shared some of his expertise in a four-part series of QST articles, ‘Electromagnetic Pulse and the Radio Amateur,’ that has stood the test of time as the classic treatment of this important topic,” Sumner said.
His son Dennis A. Bodson, W3DZK, said arrangements are pending.