Section Manager (SM) - Phil Temples, K9HI 
Assistant Section Manager (ASM) – Jeremy Breef-Pilz, KB1REQ 
Affiliated Club Coordinator (ACC) – Arthur "Bo" Budinger, WA1QYM 
Official Observer Coordinator (OOC) - Ed Parish, K1EP 
Public Information Coordinator (PIC) - Bob Salow, WA1IDA 
Section Emergency Coordinator (SEC) - Rob Macedo, KD1CY 
Section Traffic Manager (STM) – Marcia Forde, KW1U 
State Government Liaison (SGL) - Shawn O'Donnell, K3HI 
Technical Coordinator (TC) - Eric Falkof, K1NUN  


It's been an extraordinary past few weeks for the citizens of
Massachusetts as well as for the entire country. The tragic events at
the Boston Marathon on Patriot's Day and the weeks following will
forever be seared into our collective memories. The bombings,
subsequent violence, the lockdown, an historic manhunt, and the
eventual capture of a dangerous fugitive not only shook us but led us
to summon our most enduring and positive of human qualities. We
listened and watched in awe to the stories of first responders (and
ordinary citizens) who rushed into harm's way to aid the injured and
dying. In the days afterward, we collectively grieved. Slowly, now, we
collectively heal.

For the hundreds of Amateur Radio volunteers from across New England
who came to serve that day, the Marathon was going to be a fun, routine
public service event. Sure, operators at previous Marathons have endured
hardships and weather-related challenges. Temperature extremes in years
past have resulted in hundreds of requests for ambulance transport to
area hospitals. One year, there was even a fatality. But in all of the
thirty-plus years of Boston Marathons in which amateurs have served,
this one was without precedent.  

Amateur Radio volunteers performed admirably during the period where
they were covering a normal public service event. BAA officials in
Hopkinton successfully ensured a smooth and safe start, thanks in part
to efficient communications provided by the hams that shadowed them.
Checkpoints and first aid stations were able to verify and obtain
needed supplies, and later, coordinate the transport of runners. Red
Cross officials who crisscrossed the course were kept in the loop
always, thanks to their Amateur Radio shadows.

But then... 2:50 PM. 

Initially, rumors and vague reports surfaced. CNN texts and other media
alerts began to light up smartphones. Phone call volume increased. In
fact, in many locations along the course, cell phone service crashed
under the strain. Soon, it was apparent to everyone that a major
disaster was unfolding, and amateurs were caught up in the middle of
it. The jarring directive went out over the amateur networks to halt
all runners. 

Stop the Marathon.

The BAA's mission abruptly changed, and new priorities were quickly
introduced. As Marathon volunteer Tim Carter, W3ATB of Meredith, New
Hampshire succinctly puts it, "The bombs created a new set of problems.
How do the runners stay warm? How do the runners get fed? How do the
runners get to their belongings? How do the runners discover if their
loved ones waiting at the finish are okay? How do the runners let their
loved ones know where they are? How will thousands of runners be
transported to who-knows-where?"

News coverage of the bombings and subsequent capture of the suspects
has, of course, been non-stop and numbing. Soon, for the first time the
behind-the-scenes story of Amateur Radio at this Boston Marathon will
appear in the volunteers' own words in the pages of QST, CQ Magazine
and the ARRL's online monthly ARES Newsletter.  I want to thank our
Section Emergency Coordinator Rob Macedo, KD1CY, for helping to pull
together much of the material that will appear in these stories. Some
of the other contributors include: Paul Topolski, W1SEX, District
Emergency Coordinator for Worcester County, Western MA; Steve Schwarm,
W3EVE, DEC for Field Operations, Eastern MA; Tim Carter, W3ATB; Carl
Aveni, N1FY, Assistant SEC; Terry Stader, KA8SCP, DEC.

I'm proud of the actions of the section's ARES members and other
Marathon Amateur Radio Communications consortium participants during
this horrific event. When the shock hit, amateurs shifted gears
seamlessly from public service event coverage to full-blown emergency
operations. The fact that amateurs are trained and able to make such a
profound transition so quickly ensures that our services will always be
in demand. You have this Section Manager's sincere gratitude.

The month of May promises to be a very busy one for on-air activities,
flea markets, and public service activities. The 4th annual Watch City
Festival will be held on May 10-12. For the second year, the Waltham
ARA will host special event station W1S, celebrating both the
bicentennial of the Francis Cabot Lowell Mill--the first American
factory to produce finished cotton--and WARA's 75th anniversary.
Amateur operators are invited to assist. For more info and to
volunteer, contact Bill at <>.

The Southeastern MA ARA Annual Tailgate Flea Market will be held on May
11 at the clubhouse property at 54 Donald Street in Dartmouth. For
details, visit <>.

Although it was cancelled on April 21 due to the Marathon violence, the
Flea at MIT in Cambridge will return to its usual venue on May 20, as
well as subsequent third Sundays for the remainder of the summer.

Are you QRV for the New England QSO Party May 4-5? It's a great way to
test your station and antennas, and put Eastern Massachusetts on the
map. Plus, it's fun! For the details, visit <>. 

Team HAMCOW will conduct its annual DXpedition to Gay Head Lighthouse
on Martha's Vineyard from May 3-5, operating as W1ACT. "This the team's
20th trip to this location," reports N1JOY. "We'll be on air for the New
England QSO Party, ARLHS, County Hunters (Dukes, MA), US Islands, IOTA,
and 7QP, and just plain old fun and casual operating."

This bears repeating: ARRL Field Day, June 22-23, 2013, is the ARRL's
flagship operating event.  Field Day is always held the fourth full
weekend in June.  It brings together new and experienced hams for 24
hours of operating fun. Field Day packets are now available for
download and include the complete rules, as well as other useful
information. Visit <>. 

On a sadder note, Algonquin ARA and Central MA ARA members mourn the
loss of Silent Key Rene F. Doucette, KB1OUW, of Stow.

N1RCW in Forestdale has been utilizing Echolink of late. Rick currently
has the N1YHS 220 repeater in Bourne tied in to Echolink. He's also
experimenting with a simplex link to the 220 machine.

Don't forget--SKYWARN is holding training sessions in Walpole and
Townsend on May 2 and May 4, respectively. The full training schedule
can be viewed at <>. 

Paul Decker, KG7HF, presented on EME ("moonbounce") at the Billerica
ARS meeting on April 3.

The Nashoba Valley ARC 2012-2013 Lantern Battery Challenge recently
concluded, in which participants attempted to complete as many contacts
as possible over four months using only nine AA alkaline cells for 1.6
Amp hours of operation. Certificates were awarded at the April meeting
to those individuals who participated in the friendly competition.

Bridgewater hams are getting closer to having a functional EOC at the
Bridgewater Middle School. Several Massasoit ARA members have stopped
by to see the new antennas on the roof.

Cape Ann ARA concluded another highly successful "Technician In A Day"
session last week. They've hit a new milestone, according to CAARA
president Stan Stone, W4HIX: "After tallying all of the previous
sessions, we now have helped 101 people get their FCC Amateur Radio
Technician license through this program."

W1XP and KD1LE presented on Lightning Protection for Amateur Stations
at a recent Nashoba Valley ARC meeting in Pepperell. 

KB1OIQ and PART of Westford netted some fine PR for ham radio in the
Lowell Sun last month. It was entitled "Ham radio: the original social
network." The full story can be viewed online at

Finally, for your amusement, this imaginative pitch: a Toronto, Ontario
area Amateur Radio licensing class advertisement, "Ham Radio Thwarts
Zombie Apocalypse" at "Ham radio thwarts zombie apocalypse".


ARRL Eastern Massachusetts Section
Section Manager: Phillip Temples, K9HI