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257 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Those who worked at Portishead Radio/GKA will be saddened to hear of the passing of Larry Summers, one of the great characters of the station, earlier this week.

Larry was a typical Liverpool R/O, full of energy and wit, and apart from being a first class operator he was a keen member of local sports clubs and those organised by GKA. One of those annoying people who was good at everything!

He served at sea before joining GKA in the early 1970s.

He broadcast the last R/T message from GKA on 30th April 2000, and then worked for BT's Satellite Services before taking retirement, continuing to play golf and attend old boys meals regularly.

Our thoughts and condolences go to his wife Sharon, daughters Adele and Lauren and families. He will be much missed.

Rest in Peace mate.


Super Moderator
6,632 Posts

Thanks for posting this. He was as you say a master of many things.

Just to add he was an amazing telegraphist and I enjoyed working him from GKA on one of, if not the last voyage of the Empress of Canada/GHLA. He was I believe the 2nd or possibly Chief at that time. He joined us at GKA shortly after.

Neville - Hawkey01

6 Posts
RIP Larry.

He had lots of good points, i.e very funny amusing guy who lit up any room he was in. But one was unique.

His ability to be able to send or receive morse whilst having a conversation was unique and an everyday occurence. He could be describing how his golf round had gone hole by hole whilst typing the message he was getting through his headphones. I twice listened into ships signals he was receiving thinking they must be loud and clear (no fading or interference). Both times I needed 100 percent concentration to get the message and would have had to ask for a repeat word or three.

A QSL was all he ever tapped out.

Larry could be loudly telling a joke whilst laughing or humouressly poking fun at someone whilst still sending or receiving.

For non morse operators, I guess it was the equivalent to be able to take dictation from one person, in a crowded room with others talking, whilst having a long loud conversation with a second person.

If there has ever been a better morse operator I dont know of him.

My point in posting is to share this story about Larry. It still makes me laugh. I guess Larry was in his 30s at the time.

He was a fierce competitor at every sport. He played for a local Soccer team in the local league. One Saturday afternoon match
unbelievably both teams suffered a mix up as to who brought a football along to the ground. Usually both teams
would have a number of them. They had not one football between them.

Larry saved the day .. he had a football in his car boot.

So the game went ahead. Unfortunately .. Larry got himself sent off. Nothing unusual about that to be honest.
He walked off the pitch non too happy.

Then he walked back on .. picked up the HIS football and said Ill take this then .. its mine .. ignoring all pleas not to take it.

The game had to abandoned.

Larry .. a legend.
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