Warren Ugene Amfahr
Silent Key W0WL
Born July 31, 1925
Died April 6, 2016
Warren Ugene Amfahr died of pneumonia, in his home in rural Fairbank, Iowa on April 6, 2016, at the age of 90 years.
He was born in Waterloo, Iowa on July 31, 1925 the son of Doris and Tony Amfahr. He had a lifelong passion for electronic communications. Before he was ten, he was operating his own ham radio station. He left Waterloo East High School to serve in the Navy during WWII as a radioman where he made numerous trans-Pacific tours to islands such as Tarawa, Philippines and Guam (1943-1946).
Warren met Mary Opheim, at Iowa State Teachers College. They were married in Bode, Iowa on August 31st, 1947 then returned to Cedar Falls to resume their full-time college studies. With the GI bill and part-time work at Rath's Packing Plant, Warren built their small home on Tremont Street, and graduated Iowa State Teachers College in 1950 with a Bachelor of Arts Degree.
His first professional job was with the Boeing Antenna Lab servicing B-47s. After five years he was hired as a design engineer for Collins Radio Company for eighteen years. During this time he traveled to many places throughout the world. His work included frequent overseas trips and six month post assignments in places like Singapore, South Africa, and Argentina. Collins Radio later stationed Warren's family in London where he travelled extensively through Europe and Asia. In his later years, he had to get a fresh passport to travel into Rijiad. He often mentioned, tongue in cheek, and how he forgot to inform the Saudis that he was an Honorary Member of the Israeli Air Force.
Warren received further recognition for his professional expertise and achievements specific to his 1961 US patent Voice Activated Control System and his 1971 US patent RF I-pad low impedance coupling circuit attenuator with AGC voltage control, combined with his work at Collins Radio on unidirectional loop antennas. From his alma mater, the University of Northern Iowa, College of Natural Sciences, Warren was awarded recognition as Alumni Fellow.
His career path found him as Communications Director for the State of Iowa where he served as the project engineer for Iowa's custom designed Public Safety radio system. Later, Warren did some consultant work for a major automotive plant experiencing problems with their radio controlled robotics. During retirement he operated his ham radio daily and finished numerous electronic projects. Warren's passion for Ham Radio provided a foundation for his professional accomplishments and the cultural sensitivity to maintain lifelong communications with people all over the world.
He was very proud of his accomplishments in life and his family loved him and were very proud of him. His Federal Communications Commission issued Amateur Radio Licensee Call Sign W0WL is now a silent key.
Warren was preceded in death by his wife Mary and his parents Doris and Tony Amfahr.
He is survived by his four children, Galen, Denis, Craig, and Toni Amfahr, his brother Richard Amfahr, and four grandchildren, Avril Amfahr Elsberry, Denis Amfahr Jr., Valerie Amfahr Keith, and Mark Amfahr.
Warren was great grandfather to four boys, Hunter Larson, Garrett Larson, Nikolas Amfahr and Nolan Amfahr.
Warren's and Mary's ashes will be buried together on the AMFAHR plot in the Littleton Cemetery in Perry Township, Buchanan County, Iowa.
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