Tuesday, June 12, 2018

Radio Canada International Retrospective

Fifty years ago Radio Canada (International) and their unmistakable "Oh Canada" interval was an easy catch in the United States. I listened to the station regularly. Like many DXers of the day, I tuned in to hear Glenn Hauser’s DX Listening Digest, hosted by Ian McFarland, on Radio Canada. It proved to be an invaluable source when searching for new radio stations and developments in the broadcasting world. As a regular listener I QSLed Radio Canada more times than most shortwave broadcasters back then.

When I resumed the hobby in South East Asia, I discovered Radio Canada International  (RCI) relayed their broadcasts from many transmitter sites. These included Kunming, Urumqi and Xian (China), Yamata (Japan), Kimjae (South Korea), Tinang (Philippines), Santa Maria de Galeria (Vatican), and  Skelton and Woofferton (UK). Transmissions from their historic and now dismantled Sackville (New Brunswick) site was also received, but generally in the winter months. Even CBC Radio Nord was logged and QSLed from Malaysia.

Anyone who ever submitted a reception report to Radio Canada International will surely recognise the name Bill Westenhaver. He was the QSL veri-signer for RCI. He was the kind and helpful guy who promptly signed and posted the station's QSL cards. I remember him especially in the closing days of RCI. He worked tirelessly to ensure  listeners received RCI souvenirs and Verification Letters in lieu of QSL cards. Bill could easily have ignored them, but he didn't. That's the kind of guy he was...classy!

So it is with great fondness I recall and pay tribute to Radio Canada International in this short video. Thank you RCI for all the great memories.

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