As of July 16, 2002 - John KF4JFV has become a silent key...

John, KF4JFV RAG-DP#07

           Subj: "The Last Farewell!"

            Date: 07/10/2002 11:46:27 AM Eastern Daylight Time
            From: (John Safina)
            To: (Jim Fisher)

            To All Rotten Apples,

            I listened to my first Rotten Apple broadcast back in 1993. I accidentally came across 7238 while surfing across the 40 meter band while looking for something interesting to listen to. I was just a shortwave listener at the time, and didn't know that much about amateur radio. The conversations between fellow hams really caught my attention, especially the moderator (Leon W9OTZ), I thought it would be fun to be able to say hello to these nice people. I got into the habit of not only listening to the Rotten Apples, but eventually staying on the air later and listening to The Classroom Net. Listening to Joey and the gang really brightened up my days.

            I had been paralyzed from the neck down in a bad motorcycle accident in September of 1990, and listening to the radio-pretty much became my sole source of entertainment. In 1995 I started learning about amateur radio,
and the possibility of someday taking a test. In March of 96 I took my first test of and received my technician license. I studied hard, and devoted most of my days to learning Morse code, I really wanted to someday acquire the extra license. In July of 97 some good friends came over to my house and helped erect a Gap Titin vertical antenna. A few days later I transmitted on my new Icom 706 radio for the first time. One of the first operators I met was Mark K2CON, who immediately made me feel at home and introduced me Leon and the rest of the 7238 morning gang. On October 3rd I took and passed my 20 word per minute Morse code test, and passed. "I felt like I was in ham Heaven!"

            In the years that followed I became friends with many of the Rotten Apples, and have very much felt like you guys were part of my family. I cannot put into words how much I have enjoyed your company, or could ever explain how you have improved my life, so I'm going to just simply say, thank you very much.

            I am suffering from chronic renal failure, and as of a few days ago my kidneys have just about stop functioning. I have also many other problems which make a transplant or such impossible. I am using some pretty strong medication now, and don't know how much longer I will be able to write e-mail, or even speak, so I want to say goodbye now. I'm going to try to transmit one last time on the Rotten Apples, but this letter is in case I don't make it. I don't know what the future holds for any of us here on earth, but if there is any way I can bestow goodwill to you my friends, I will.

            Forever Your Friend, John KF4JFV


      A Special Thank You... a message from Mildred - KF4JFV's Mom

In a Message dated Dec. 13th, 2002:  Dear Mark, I haven't forgotten you and the Rotten Apples. I think of you all often. I sure do miss hearing you all talk in the mornings. I have been keeping busy. I have been traveling some. I can't stay at home much, too many memories. John was such good company. I sure do miss him. The weather here is bad. It's raining today. Snowed last week - we had 6" of snow. It's 39 degrees now and is going to get colder tonight and freeze again and next week will be in the 60's again. We have mixed weather. Give my regards to all the Rotten Apples. Tell them I thank them all for their cards and notes. I will try and write some of them soon. Take care of yourself. Keep in touch... Mildred (Mother of John KF4JFV - who became a SK July 16th, 2002)

God Bless You John - Our Prayers Are With You - We Will Miss You Dearly...