Earle Smith, VE6NM, SK

Earle Smith, VE6NM, passed away on Friday February 24, 2012.  He will be missed by his family and many friends.  We invite friends, amateurs, colleagues and all those whom Earle may have touched in some way to share there memories and offer condolences to Earle’s family.

We have truly lost an endearing soul. I first met Earle when he was a guest a the ARRL Board Meetings. I remember his pleasant smile and wonderful, happy-go-lucky attitude and I was always a better person, after having spend time with him during the meetings.
He made a difference in Ham Radio and I will remember him always.
My heartfelt condolences to his family, especially his YL, Barbara whom he spoke so fondly of.
73/88 – RIP, my friend.
Joyce KA2ANF

racadmin says:

The message below was received by the RAC president who requested that it be posted.

Dear Mr. Geoff Bawden-WE4BAW
President , Radio Amateurs Canadian

I have received the sadness through Mr. Steve Adger Flamm-WB4GCF , that Mr.Earle Smith – VE6NM – Immediate Past President of RAC, who I have took picture with him in Dayton Hamvention at May 20th 2011 , was
“silence key”.

On behalf of our VARC and personally myself I would to share the sorrow and send our condolences to the RAC and Mr.Earle Smith’s family.

Best regards .
Nguyen Bac Ai – XV2A
President, VARC

Bj. Madsen - VE5FX says:

I have known Earle for many years and served with him on the RAC Board of Directors beginning in 2002. My fondest memory of Earle involves a lot of beer in a bar in Ottawa where he and I discussed many of ham radio’s problems well into the night.

Bj. Madsen

Heather Stanley (Earle's Daughter) says:

On behalf of the family I would like to thank each and everyone of you for your comments about Dad. I knew he was well liked and respected within the amateur radio community but never truly realized the full extent.

Your comments have really helped the family through this time as we recall what he has accomplished in his life and celebrate it. Some of the comments were used in his service which to me truly spoke of the man I loved so well.

Again, I thank you on behalf of myself, my mother Barbara and my brother Ian.

73 Heather

Rick Francis says:

Met Earle again at Dayton 2011 and we continued to talk about his days in Whitehorse. He was in Orillia for the RAC meeting back when and we got talking about the RCAF during the cold war. Last Feb 2011 in Whitehorse during the Yukon Quest, my wife, Marina VA3OXX, and I met up with Ron VY1RM again and continued to discuss Earle’s role in that area. An amazing man who always promoted amateur radio.


Rick & Marina

John Grow VE2EQL says:

I knew Earle on the Airwaves. He was also a QRP’er, and built numerous radios. He was also a Mason and a Shriner.
Condolences to the family. John Grow VE2EQL

Al McNeil says:

Hamdon has lost a great supporter and gentleman. I personally knew Earl not only as a ham but as one of the first military radio operators in Alert NWT. Two years ago Earle was blessed with the opportunity to fly back to Alert (400miles from the North Pole) with other selected previous military personnel. He took pictures and made sure those who couln’t make it got a copy. What a guy…the group known as the “Frozen Chosen” say goodbye to one of their own.

Ron Thompson VE8RT says:

In the hopes of sparking more interest in amateur radio in the NWT a few of us, VE8NSD, VE8VW, and myself, set out to bring Field Day to Hay River. We put word out that we needed more operators. Rick VE6CRE responded as did Earle. Activity was low that year and Earle disappeared into his RV around 10PM, we thought to call it a night. Not at all, 6 metres had opened up and Earle was at his post in the RV working the band from a new-to-him grid square. That Field Day experience with Earle was one of the best and most memorable I’ve had and we all looked forward to doing it again. During the quiet times Earle shared with us some of his experiences, more than making up for the poor radio propagation. And he wasn’t shy about promoting membership and participation in the Radio Amateurs of Canada. He will be remembered.

Dean Chesterman says:

I met Earle when I was a Summer Student in Grande Prairie in the late 70s / early 80s. I rode with him to a number of telecom sites in his company truck with multiple radios. Always gracious and always a good answer to any question. Earle triggered my interest in amatuer radio, and after a hiatus, I am studying for my basic qualification. I am saddened as one of my goals was to contact him, now I will have to wait a bit.

My condolances to his family.

Larry Horlick says:

I first crossed paths with Earle in the late 1990s, when he phoned me at home asking if I would be interested putting a 6m beacon on the air. He would supply all the gear, take care of the licencing etc. All he wanted from me was to install it and look after the maintenance. Having never heard of this guy, Earle Smith, before this I agreed, albiet a bit reluctantly. VE8BY/b was born. In June of 2006 I had pleasure of meeting Earle when he visited Iqaluit and Pangnirtung. That weekend we operated Field Day from a spot high in the hills surrounding Iqaluit. It was great fun. Of course it was all Earle’s idea; he was intensely passionate about Amateur which rubbed off on many of us who had the pleasure of knowing him. His passing is a huge loss to us all and I wish to send my sincere condolances to Earl’s family and close friends.


art. lafleur says:

My heritage is Canadian. My grandfather was born in New Brunswick. I lived in N>B> after retiring from the U. S. Army in 1965. While I never had the distinct pleasureof meeting Earl I would like to offer my condolences. My call sign is KI7ZR. Art. LaFleur

Kent Haase says:

I met Earle by email when I was on a Weather Radio assignment with our weather service. He enthusiastically agreed to be my remote “ears” for the Saddle Hills Transmitter.

He would provide the most helpful (and unsolicited!) reports and comments. His dedication to the public cause will surely be missed.

I’ll miss you and your reports Earle, but look forward to the day I get to meet you in person.

Kent ve4keh/ve4tux

Joseph Parkinson says:

I first met Earl when I joined the RAC executive in 2006. As well as working together we had many chats over the years the last at the 2011 Dayton Hamvention.

So long good buddy Amateur in Canada has lost a true friend

Dana Shtun says:

I had the great pleasure to work with Earle in the creation of RAC. As the President of CRRL at the merger, we always found a way around the roadblocks thanks to Earle. During RAC board meetings, any time things got a bit testy, Earle also found a way through or around! Over the years Earle worked on beacon projects that included 50 Mhz, and I kept trying to get him to get active on 50 Mhz, which he always joked about … whenever we crossed paths I always asked him where he was driving to next! I certainly will miss his infectious smile, and kind words and gentle manner! A true ham to be sure. 73 Earle & sincerest condolences to the family…..Dana Ve3KU/VE3DSS TCA columnist, 1st VP RAC, Past Pres CRRL…one of the fellow founders of RAC with Earle…

I was very sad to hear of Earl’s passing. I met with Earl’s on several occasions over the past few years and the last time was just last summer at Tim Horton’s in Parrsboro, NS. I always kept him up to date with recent repeaters updates and configurations from back east.

The Amateur Radio fraternity at large has lost a formidable ambassador and friend. He will certainly be missed by all.

Lorne VE1BXK

Rue Stuteville says:

I met Earle at the QCWA convention in Virginia Beach. I was was holding down the radio room. Earle came down to see what Chapter 119 had setup. I got to hold a great eyeball QSO with him. I found him to be a great ham with amateur radio deep in his heart. QCWA and the amateur radio community will have a wide space missing in it’s ranks. I have his business card he gave me in my QSL cards. I hold it with the same pride that I have have for my QSO cards.
My heart felt condolences to his family, you will be in my thoughts and prayers.
Rue Stuteville W4RUE
QCWA Chapter 119
Va Beach, Va

earlecraig says:

I worked Earle for the first time this last October 17 and was told by him that I was the only Earle with an “e” on the end like his that he had ever worked during his entire amateur radio operator’s career. I am honored. We will indeed miss him.

My heartfelt condolences to his family.

Earle Craig AB6WL

Alejandro Díaz says:

Earle and I met by the first time in the 2006 Ham Radio Convention of the FMRE in Veracruz, Mexico. A true gentleman !. I asked him for help in order to get the QSL card of my only one contact with Somalia (yes, a Canadian colleague assigned in that country some years ago); he promised me to get it. One year later we met again in Acapulco…he was still trying to assist me and a few months later the so long awaited QSL card arrived to my home with greetings from Earl…what a nice surprise !. During the closing evening party of the Acapulco convention he was so kind to invite my wife to dance for some minutes because I am a very poor “dancer”. I met also Barbara: my sincere condolences to her and all his family. Certainly I will miss him !. Alex, XE1MEX

Jeff Beals says:

I had the honor of working with Earle on the QCWA Nominating Committee recently. Despite having to deal with his medical issues, he was there to provide leadership to the Committee in carrying our their mission.

I also had the pleasure to eyeball with him again at the QCWA booth in Dayton last year.

Earle will most certainly be missed by our worldwide community of Amateur Radio.

My sincerest condolences to Earle’s family & friends.

Jeff Beals, WA4AW

Jean VE2JM says:

Thank you Earl for making Amateur Radio in Canada “Better”.
Your contribution is much appreciated…
73′s Earle….

Jean VE2JM

Larry (H.H.) Phinney VE6BOP says:

A real loss for Grande Prairie and the Canadian Ham community.
Met Earl in 1976 when I joined Alberta Power. Spent many days and nights with Earl at radio sites in Northern Alberta.
Earl was easy to work with and was open to new ideas. He was a tremendous help in getting the new mobile radio system up and working. Couldn’t have done it without
Earl and his techs.
My condolences to his family and friends and to the Hams that have known him in person and on the air.

Brad and Abbie Ross says:

Back in 1972 I Abbie met Earl in a hotel resturant in Grand Cache Alta. Earl and friend were having lunch, the friend ask what flat fish was I said back in Nova Scotia they call it flounder. Earl looked at me and ask what part of N.S. I was from I told him I was raised in Parrsboro he said he was from Southampton which is 15 miles from Parrsboro. We enjoyed a great conversation about the area, A few years later when Brad was listening to the ham radio he heard a gentleman talking on the radio,he said he was living in Grand Prairie and home visiting his parents in Southamption, Brad and I realized that the gentleman on the radio was Earl Smith the same fellow I had met in Grand Cache. Brad started talking with Earl and invited him to our house for a coffee. He stopped in, we had a great visit. After that every time Earl Visited N.S. we tried to get together at the house, cottage or Tim Hortons. Earl attended some of out club brunches and meetings. He was a member of our radio club (WestCumb). WE will miss you Earl,you were a great friend enjoyed your visits, talks & emails.

Abbie VE1BFB & Brad VE1ZX

Bill Glydon VY2LI says:

As a long-time RAC member and Assistant Director PEI, I have read many of Earl’s comments in TCA.They were always thought-provoking and forward thinking.We never met personally,but I know his family and the ham radio community has suffered a huge loss with his passing.Rest in peace.

Bill VY2LI

Daniel & Jackie lamoureux says:

Jackie and I have just lost a very good friend.

Earle and I met in 1996, on the RAC Board where we were both Regional Directors for a few years. He replaced me as RAC President and we travelled quite a bit toghether.

We spent a memorable 10 days in Brasilia at a Region 2 Conference. We both worked hard at the Huntsville GAREC while our wives were spending their afternoons in the bar chating away (over coffee and cakes). We were screeched-in at the base of famous Signal Hill. He will be sorely missed.

Barbara, if you ever decide to come by Montreal, our door will always be open for you. Please accept our condolences for you and the family.

Daniel, VE2KA
Jackie, VE2AX

Norman Richardson VE3NLH says:

My condolences to Earle’s family. You will be missed Earle.

Norman Richardson VE3NLH

Craig Bowling says:

I first met Earle in the mid 70′s.

He was a good neighbor and was always ready and willing to help with any problem.

We did many amateur related projects together and I will miss him very much.

My condolences go out to Barb, Ian and Heather and Heather G.

Doug Leach VE3XK says:

I have known Earle for a number of years when we served together on the RAC executive and board. He was a steadying influence whose participation was welcome by all. Earle was always prepared to serve his fellow radio amateurs in whatever capacity he was needed. Those who knew him will miss him greatly. Even those radio amateurs who didn’t know him personally will miss his many contributions to amateur radio.

Dennis Hepworth says:

Sorry to hear of your lose.. Earle was a driving force for the good of Amateur radio and a friend to all.
He will be missed.

My condolences to his family.

Dennis Hepworth ve7dh

Garry says:

Very sorry to hear of your loss.
Earle was always a respected and welcome visitor in the central Alberta area any time we saw him.
Our best wishes from the Central Alberta Amateur Radio Club…Garry VE6CIA RAC Alberta SM

Everett Price says:

I had the pleasure of meeting and enjoying several warm conversations with Earle. His contribution to the amateur radio community will be greatly missed.

On behalf of amateur radio operators in the Atlantic Region, may I offer sincere condolences at this difficult time.

Everett Price – VO1DK
Director, Atlantic Region

George VE3YV says:

I first met Earle in the discussions that formed RAC, from CRRL and CARF. Among many who let their passions outweigh their good intentions, Earle was a calming influence, always dedicated to finding a way for everyone to work together for the betterment of ham radio. That strong belief, coupled with a willingness to try new things and serve in whatever capacity he was asked, was a significant contribution to ham radio and RAC. His actions set a high standard, and his legacy is a challenge to the rest of us to do the same. My deepest sympathies to his family.
George VE3YV

Lisa Kustosik, KA1UFZ says:

My heart goes out to his family. Earle was an inspiring man that loved life and truely lived it to its max. He should have taught class on humanity and humility because I would have enrolled in that course. I will really miss him!

Guy Charron says:

Gonna miss you buddy.


Ramon Santoyo V., XE1KK says:

I had the pleasure to meet Earle for the first time at the FMRE’s national convention in Veracruz, Mexico. He and Barbara integrated so well with many amateurs that didn’t speak any English. He had a charming smile to everybody and everybody like him.

We surely will miss Earle, a radio amateur, an ambassador from Canada, an a very good friend.

Descance en paz.

Goodbye, my old friend. May you always have blue skies and a following wind.

Truly, you have reached out and touched the face of God.

I will never forget you.

Per Ardua ad Astra.


Pete Landry VE2XPL says:

We mourne the loss of one of our own. I never met Earle, but knew of him & his involvement with RAC and Amateur Radio in general. My condolences to his family.

Pete, VE2XPL, Montréal

Garth Carman VE8NSD says:

I first met Earle when he travelled up here to Hay River to work Field Day 2009. Even though he knew thousands and thousands of people he had the unique gift of making YOU feel like you had been friends forever. The last time I saw him was at Dayton 2011. His disease was well advanced by then yet Earle maintained his humour and trademark honesty. Ham radio in Canada has lost a true diplomat and spokesman.

Fraser Mac Dougall VE1WO says:

On behalf of Halifax Amateur Radio Club I would like to offer our Sincere Condolonces to the Family .
Many of our Members have had dealings with Earl over the years and he will be missed in the Amateur Community.

Fraser Mac Dougall President HARC

Pierre Mainville says:

Earle was dedicated to Amateur Radio and a supporter of National Organizations, he will be missed by the Amateur Radio Community.
I would like to pass on my deepest sympathy and condolences to Earle’s wife Barbara and Family.

Pierre VA3PM

i have received the following comments from our website.

You received a message from ve6wde@telus.net

I would like to pass on my deepest sympathy and condolences to Earle,s family and close friends.
I only had the pleasure of talking to Earl in person a couple of times but liked and respected the man very much. What Earl and I had in common besides be Amateur Radio ops was that we both served in Whitehorse and Alert Ellsmere Island during the heat of the Cold War.

You received a message from ve6ii@yahoo.ca

I met Earl in the late 1970`s through amateur radio ,since moving to Grande Prairie I have had the pleasure of haveing breakfast with him saturday morning.
Don Allen ve6ii/ve6akcl

Earle will be deeply missed by all of us in ham radio.

Randy Morden says:

I just received word of Earle’s passing, and I’m saddened by the news. I met him in person trading gear, and he was a very genuine man with a broad smile, always in a cheerful mood with a good word to say. I will miss hearing his FB 160m CW sig from Grande Prairie during winter evenings.

My condolences to Earle’s family.

Randy Morden, VE6RGU

Ken Oelke, VE6AFO says:

I have known Earle for many years. Earle was a true promoter of amateur radio and our National Association -RAC. He will be sorely missed at our QCWA Wild Rose Chapter 151 meetings – for which he would often travel 1400 plus Kms, return, to attend and share his high spirit with other QCWA members. Recently Earle was asked to chair the QCWA Nomination Committee and did so, even while feeling ill and taking treatments. This was the kind of dedication he provided to amateur radio and he will be sorely missed by the entire Amateur Radio Community.

My wife Linda-Lou, VE6LGO (who Earle shared a great friendship with) and I offer our condolences to Earle’s wife Barbara and the rest of his Family.

Ken Oelke, VE6AFO

Paul Burggraaf says:

I met Earle during the 2007 ARES Special Event at Cabot Tower, Signal Hill. He made a true effort to speak with club members at all levels. I found Earle to be a kind and true gentlemen.
My condolences to his family, you have lost someone very special. Our thoughts and prayers are with them at this time.

Geoffrey Bawden says:

We will all miss Earle. He was a gentleman and force for good in the amateur radio community and a great friend to amateurs everywhere. He faced his trials with pluck and wisdom.

My condolences to his family who have lost someone very special.

Geoff Bawden ve4baw
President and Chair, RAC

J. T. Mitchell ( Mitch ) says:

Earle was a lot of fun, enjoyed the chats we had when he dropped but the shop.
He was dedicated to ham radio.

A true believer

Mitch VE6OH

Doug Mercer says:

Earle and I met at the 2007 ARES Special Event when he was joined by ARRL President Joel Harrison. Earle was keenly interested in everyone he met, and I found him a genuine, kind man. We next met at last year’s RAC AGM where he laughed until he cried when Screeched in by Charlie VO1VZ.
I will miss him. Please know that the Smith family will be in my thoughts and prayers at this difficult time.

steveflamm says:

It is with great sadness that I have learned of the death of my friend and colleague Earl Smith. I have known Earle over five years and even in that short time he has made an impact on my life. The kindness, humility and friendliness of Earlel impacted anybody that he ever met. I was fortunate enough to see him in person about four times and last saw him in May at the Dayton Ham Fest’s where he told me about his condition We worked very closely together on the Canadian-American Joint ARES event in Newfoundland. We have stayed in touch since then and he always remained so positive as was typical of Earle.

He was a great gentleman who will be missed not just by the ham radio community but by countless others who have had the good fortune of knowing this outstanding gentleman. Although now a” silent key ““ the great legacy of Earle Smith will continue to permeate the airwaves and wherever Canadian and American hams Canada speak about the great ones, the name Earle Smith will always be” 30 over S9”
My deepest sympathies and condolences to his family but please note the wonderful memories of this fine man will be with us always.

Steve A. Flamm
Atlanta, Georgia

Don Rowed VE3KII says:

I had the honour of meeting and working with Earl in the late 1990′s while on the executive board of RAC. He was a gentleman and a calming influence at a time when it was needed. His dedication and support of Amateur Radio will not be easily replaced.
My condolances to Earl’s family.

Rest in Peace 73:

Don Rowed VE3KII