RIO RANCHO, N.M. — When Larry Elkin of Rio Rancho was going to college in New York, he picked up a radio transmission astronaut John Glenn sent from orbit around Earth.
Now Elkin is president of the High Desert Amateur Radio Club of New Mexico Inc., a local group that aims to educate people about amateur radio operation and is available to help with emergency communication.
“Our club is multi-faceted,” Elkin said. “Emergency communications is one branch of amateur radio. What it does is fill the gap where there is no reliable cell phone or radio communication.”
For instance, search and rescue teams may use amateur radios to communicate in remote areas. Some High Desert Amateur Radio Club (HDARC) members participate in search and rescue.