Fred Maia, W5YI, passed away Wednesday
evening March 28, 2012, following a brave battle with cancer. He
is survived by his wife and two daughters. Services will be held
3 PM, Saturday, March 31 at Moore Funeral Home Chapel, 1219 North
Davis Dr. Arlington, TX 76012.
August 28, 1935 - March 28, 2012
Fred was a leading amateur radio journalist for nearly 35 years
and a pioneer of the volunteer examining program adopted by the
FCC in 1984. Fred was a prolific author, focusing his writing
skills on the amateur and commercial radio industry. For 25
years, Fred published "The W5YI Report," dubbed
"America's Oldest Ham Radio Newsletter," from 1978 to
2003, and has been a CQ contributing editor since 1985. His
regulatory affairs column, first titled "Ticket Talk,"
then "Washington Readout," offered news and perspective
on FCC Regulations and ITU actions, and helped untold numbers of
hams find their way through often-confusing mazes of the VEC
licensing, FCC rules and the vanity call sign systems. His final
"Washington Readout" column will appear in the May 2012
issue of CQ.
When the FCC adopted a volunteer examining for all levels of
amateur radio licensing in 1984, Fred applied to be a national
Volunteer Examiner Coordinator (VEC). In doing so, he was the
first VEC appointed by the Federal Communications Commission.
Fred subsequently founded The W5YI Group in 1986 to develop,
publish and sell amateur and commercial radio license study
materials. In the realm of FCC commercial radio licensing, Fred
formed National Radio Examiners to provide examination services
as a COLEM. He also was the author of GROL-Plus, a commercial
radio licensing study manual that he co-wrote with Gordon West,
Fred founded and served as President of the W5YI-VEC until his
retirement in October of 2000 when he sold The W5YI Group study
material products business to Master Publishing, Inc. The W5YI
Group retail operations were purchased by General Manager, Larry
Pollock, NB5X, newly appointed President of the W5YI -VEC and
National Radio Examiners organizations. Fred continued writing
"The W5YI Report" newsletter until July, 2003.
Fred was a graduate of the U.S. Air Force Radio Operators School
and avid CW amateur operator. Fiirst licensed as a teenager as
W1NTK in Brockton, MA., where he grew up, then later licensed as
W5UTT, he held DXCC-CW and EU-PX-A CW -100+ awards.
He was a member of QCWA and life member of the ARRL. As a leader
in the amateur radio community, Fred was instrumental in
proposing many rules changes to the FCC that have had a major
impact on ham radio over the years. He proposed the creation of
the Technician Class no-code license, adopted in February, 1991.
Fred was involved in proposals to restructure FCC amateur radio
licensing, which led to the 2000 adoption of the current system
of 3 license classes. After ITU Regulations changed in many
foreign countries around the world, Fred proposed the elimination
of Morse code testing requirements in the US for all amateur
radio licenses, which the FCC implemented in stages, reduction to
5wpm in 2003 and complete elimination in 2007.
For several decades, Fred also served on the National Conference
of Volunteer Examiner Coordinators (NCVEC), as a long-term member
of the Question Pool Committee that oversees the development and
maintenance of the amateur radio license examination question
Fred will be remembered and missed as was one of the most active personalities dedicated to growing the hobby of amateur
Thank you, Fred Maia, W5YI ...73.
Send your regards and messages to the family on the passing of Fred Maia to firstname.lastname@example.org.