It is, paradoxically, to a Swiss amateur that we owe the revival of K2UN! Yes, the brave and tough "Max" de Henseler, HB9RS/W2, after having spent many years travelling around the world at the service of the United Nations, and finally established in New York, tried to resurrect this station that - almost 30 years ago – had aroused so much hope in our hearts and so much proud to see that even the well-known United Nations used amateur radio as an instrument of universal brotherhood.
Our Old Timers will certainly remember the first station inaugurated in April 1948 during the UN Assembly General at Lake Success in the presence of the highest UN authorities and the biggest names in the world of telecommunications.
W2IOP, Larry Kashman, well known amateur radio operator at the time, was the principal operator. Eventually Larry was to be transferred and became W9IOP, always great amateur... and Vice-President and then President of Electro-Voice.
The departure of this great leader and the progressive deterioration of the political situation (remember Korea, the cold war, etc.) made that the station sank into indifference and was later removed.
The day of the inauguration of the first K2UN a real hunting party was played between the big "guns" in the amateur radio world... Honor returned to I1RM, Vittorio Motto in "phone" on 14 MHz.... Max, cough young amateur at the time, had followed these exciting games and kept an unforgettable souvenir. This gave him, probably, the idea of reviving the new station that was opened 21 October 1976 in the presence of the highest authorities of the United Nations, the IARU and the ARRL. The Secretary-General of the ITU, Mr M. Mili, staying in New York for the General Assembly of the United Nations, accepted with pleasure to inaugurate the new station that is a bit like an older sister of our 4U11TU.
Upon Max’s return to New York, currently on mission in Africa for the UN, the station will have a regular activity around the old "historic" 14.290 kHz frequency. We will give you more details as soon as possible, but - at the moment - we wanted to bring to your attention the enthusiasm and the fruitful efforts of a little-known Swiss amateur in his country and to pay him tribute as it deserves.
73 de Gérard, HB9AW and Renato HE9RMH
This article has been published in the January 1977 Old Man, the magazine of the Union of Swiss Short Wave Amateurs.
- The Union of Swiss Short Wave Amateurs