[amsat-bb] Re: MARK AUSTIN KB1GRV

Jeff KB2M kb2m at comcast.net
Tue Aug 16 17:49:35 PDT 2011

 This is very sad news. I met Mark in person in 2002 or so on one of my many
trips to Bar Harbor Maine. We became acquainted by sending text messages via
MIR then ISS. Marks love of the MIR/ISS packet network was very profound.
Last time I had dinner with Mark while passing through Ellsworth on my way
to work on the Bucks Harbor ARSR4 radar he gave me an 8x10 picture of him
with the race car he was involved in. I just went out in the garage and
found it and plan on framing it and hanging it in my shack. Mark will be
missed on the ISS.....

73 Jeff kb2m

-----Original Message-----
From: amsat-bb-bounces at amsat.org [mailto:amsat-bb-bounces at amsat.org] On
Behalf Of Pete Norris
Sent: Tuesday, August 16, 2011 13:31 PM
To: amsat-bb at amsat.org
Cc: kb5mu at amsat.org
Subject: [amsat-bb] MARK AUSTIN KB1GRV

Hi all:I received this from Phil, N1EP. I thought there would be a number of
you that might like to know.Pete, K1HZU

Hello Folks,

If you have not heard already, local (Franklin/Ellsworth) ham Mark Austin,
KB1GVR, became a silent key on August 8. Graveside services will be this
Thursday, Aug 18, at 11AM at Woodbine cemetery in Ellsworth. 

Mark was very prolific in space communications. In 2002, he told me that he
listening to his scanner, I think in 1997, and heard Russian voices coming
the speaker about every hour and 36 minutes. He discovered the voices were
cosmonauts on board the Mir Space Station. He then started recording their
broadcasts and then went out and bought his first computer so he could see
pictures he had previously recorded from the Soviet slow scan TV
transmissions.  That inspired him to earn his ham ticket so he could talk
to the cosmonauts. And talk, he did. Since then, Mark has become well known
aboard the space shuttles and International Space Station by many astronauts
and cosmonauts.

Not only has Mark talked to them on voice mode, but became extremely
at using the space station and satellites to communicate digitally. He even
discovered a new way of using one particular satellite to extend

Mark had the opportunity to meet some of the spacemen he had befriended
on-the-air when he made visits to Mission Control in Houston and to Kennedy
Space Center, where he also was thrilled to watch a shuttle launch. 

His enthusiasm with space communications inspired many hams to give it a
including myself. His advice was spot on so that I twice successfully made
voice contacts to the space station. I also had fun with Oscar-14 with
tips. If you operated an APRS station in Maine, you would recognize the
call sign, as Mark was also an avid APRS fan.

Mark's other pastimes included racing and flying with his brother in his
where his same determination brought him lots of success, rewards, and joy.
walls of Marks home were decorated with the many ham radio and racing
certificates and awards he had earned and his vast collection of space
communications QSL cards is amazing, as many EAWA members can attest to as
has brought them in for display in the past.

Mark was only 50 years old, but in his too-short life, he accomplished a
As N1DP said on last night's Washington County ARES Net, Godspeed Mark. We
miss you.

73, Phil Duggan, N1EP


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