The American Legion has formed a special entity to provide a forum for military veterans who today are engaged in a hobby that can also provide emergency communications "when all else fails." During the May 2011 Spring Meetings, the National Executive Committee authorized the establishment of The American Legion Amateur Radio Club (TALARC).

There are estimated to be 700,000 federally licensed amateur radio operators, or "hams," in the United States. Over the years, countless members of the U.S. military were trained as technicians or engineers, and later obtained amateur-radio licenses to continue to use their abilities at home, as both recreation and a public-service commitment.

"The beauty of amateur radio is that it attracts folks of all career interests, from doctors, Ph.D.s, engineers, rocket scientists to mechanics, housewives, construction and office workers, students and everything in between," says Robert L. Morrill, chairman of the Legion's Public Relations Commission. "Hams provide backup communications to emergency-management agency offices across the country when ‘all else fails,' and have done so with distinction in virtually every major disaster when cell towers and commercial communications have been knocked out after earthquakes, hurricanes, tornadoes, and man-made disasters."

The club has established an amateur radio station at National Headquarters with the call sign K9TAL (K9 The American Legion) in order to conduct special-event operations on The American Legion Birthday, Veterans Day, etc.; operate SKYWARN during local severe weather; and provide members an opportunity to operate the station during visits to National Headquarters. A special QSL card is provided to all amateur radio stations that work K9TAL on the air.

In January 2005, the Legion signed an agreement with the Department of Homeland Security to support emergency disaster preparedness. Subsequently, the Disaster Preparedness Booklet was made available to posts. Amateur-radio support was an integral entity.

"The potential to serve here is limitless," Morrill says. "Legionnaires who are hams can help others get licensed, coordinate with local emergency authorities, provide counseling and assistance to schools, and a whole array of other support.

"While some people may think that ham radio is an old technology, the simple truth is that hams were working with digital transmissions long before folks had home computers, and they provided the impetus to make ‘wireless' happen. They were transmitting emergency calls from their cars long before anyone had a mobile phone to do the same. Today, hams are conducting broad-spectrum experiments on ham bands that may eventually become routine ways to communicate for all of us."

Membership is free to members of The American Legion family.    For information, or to join: k9tal@legion.org

The American Legion Post 110

Port Charlotte Florida

20 METERS: 2ND SATURDAY OF EACH MONTH, 14.275 MHz, 1700 UTC with Net Control, Bill, KI0CW, and Asst. Net Control, Everett, WA3DVO.
40 METERS: EVERY SUNDAY: The California American Legion Amateur Radio Service (CALARS) meets every Sunday on 7.278 MHz at 2100 hours UTC. All TALARC members are welcome to check in. Dan Curry - K6DLC, American Legion Post 585, District 26 - Amateur Radio Coordinator.
40 METERS: New! We are also pleased to welcome Terry, KE6RWB, as he re-introduces the TALARC 40-meter HF net as our new TALARC 40M Net Control operator! Please turn your antennas to Arizona and thank Terry on Sunday, April 17 and every third Sunday thereafter at 2200 UTC on 40 meters near 7.243 MHz.
75 METERS: Temporarily “out of service!”
PSK31 NET: Steve, N1AB, in Orange, Calif., is hoping to establish a 20 meter PSK31 net for TALARC digital mode fans. He will be calling "CQ TALARC" at 2200 UTC daily (or as his schedule permits) on or around 14.070 MHz. Watch for him on your waterfall and keyboard your answer! PSK31 is a terrific mode. It is very robust, requires very little power (50 watts is like 2 KW on SSB) and is great fun. And don’t just use your macros in your QSOs. Have a good old ragchew. It’s like texting – only better! (If you have questions or comments about the new PSK31 net Steve would like to hear from you directly at n1absteve@gmail.com.)

IRLP: The TALARC IRLP Net, for those of you with UHF/VHF and access to a local IRLP repeater, is held the second Saturday of each month at 1800 UTC on IRLP CHANNEL 9735.
TALARC D-Star Nets: Net Control is Mark, W2UIS, from Rose Shelley Post 1034, Wallkill, N.Y. The D-Star Nets are held:

First Monday of every month as The American Legion D-Star Net (TALARC) REF026A, 9:00 p.m. Eastern/0100 UTC.
Third Monday of every month as The American Legion D-Star Net (TALARC) REF026A, 9:00 p.m. Eastern/0100 UTC.

The first net on REF026A will be April 4, 2016.

QCWA (Quarter Century Wireless Association) D-STAR Nets
QCWA members have to be licensed 25 years or longer, but net is open to all. Net Control is Mark, W2UIS.
On D-Star: 2nd Monday at 0400 UTC on REF001C, and 2nd Thursday at 0500 UTC on REF030C.

EchoLink Net
The EchoLink net is held the second Saturday of each month at 1600 UTC (12:00 noon EDT) on Conference Node *FMCA-ARC*. Download Echolink to your PC or mobile device:

TALARC Monthly Nets
National EchoLink, 20-Meter, and IRLP Nets meet the 2nd Saturday of each month.
Northeast Region 20-Meter Net meets 2nd Sunday of each month.
National 40-Meter Net meets the 3rd Sunday of each month.
National D-Star Nets meet the 1st and 3rd Mondays of each month.
Note:  Access to the *FMCA-ARC* EchoLink Conference Node cannot be made via a Repeater.

Those of you who would like to take on the challenge of starting a Regional TALARC net and acting as net control, either HF or VHF/UHF, please contact Bill Sloan, NZ9S, at the Legion National Headquarters via email: k9tal@legion.org. Let him know your idea for a particular region, what might be the best time/day schedule for you, and whether you'd like to try HF or VHF/UHF.

Updated: September 7, 2016