L-R: Kevin K5KVN, Andy K5PO, Gary WB0RUR
FAYETTEVILLE, Ark., December 17, 2012 – Amateur radio and “The Noise Blankers Radio Group” (www.noiseblankers.com) provided event communications for Wreaths Across America at the US National Cemetery in Fayetteville, Ark.
Wreaths Across America is a national non-profit organization dedicated to raising funds and placing memorial wreaths on headstones of US veterans interred world-wide in US National cemeteries.
“We managed traffic flow, disabled participant parking and shuttle bus coordination between a parking facility at the University of Arkansas and the US National Cemetery,” says Kevin Thornton, K5KVN.
Encroaching residential and commercial development resulted in a dramatic reduction in available on-site parking for this year’s event. Organizers opted to run 6 shuttle buses from Baum Stadium to the cemetery.
“It was a record turnout with approximately 2,100 volunteers placing 7,200 memorial wreaths this year in Fayetteville”, says Andy Holmes, K5PO. “It was an outstanding way to honor our veterans.”
Gary Darnell, WB0RUR added “The team staffed the only two vehicle entry points into the cemetery area. We got the support team in to execute the event – including US Representative Steve Womack (3rd District, Arkansas) and we coordinated the safe transportation of hundreds of volunteers and spectators. Not to mention managing an 80’ over the road tractor trailer and 100 motorcycles driven by the Patriot Guard.”
The Noiseblankers communicated via simplex (146.535MHz) VHF radio. Jeff, K3DEI was at Baum Stadium parking lot providing event assistance at that location.
The Noise Blankers activated special event call sign N5W on the amateur bands to raise awareness and appreciate our US Veterans. Fred, WD5DKA participated in operation of the special event and worked “a bunch of people”.
About the Noise Blankers: The Noise Blankers are a group of rebel radio operators based in northwest Arkansas. The membership roll is a tightly held secret. The next planned event by the group is to provide communications for the end of the world on December 21, 2012. They will be operating simplex.