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A Note on Radio Luz Y Vida, Honduras

By Don Moore

The following note was posted to rec.radio.shortwave when the station was reactivated in November, 1994 after a period off of the air.


Honduran station Radio Luz y Vida, 3250 kHz, has reactivated after a lengthy time off of shortwave. It was heard here in Iowa on November 13 & 14 UTC between about 0130 to 0330+. Signals were strong both nights. This is a Protestant Evangelical station and programming was in that vein. One night I heard a canned program from a church in Mexico. A couple IDs were heard.

Radio Luz y Vida is located in San Luis, a small town and commercial center in Santa Barbara department, Honduras. I visited the station in 1983 while I worked in Santa Barbara (the town) with the Peace Corps. San Luis is in a very beautiful region of cool pine-covered hills. This is a big coffee-growing region and the town is relatively prosperous for Honduras. (Or at least it was at the time of my visit.) It was a pretty typical Honduran town overall. Because it was really out of the way, it was not hooked up to the national power grid and all electricity was from a municipal generator which ran every evening from 6:30 - 9:30 p.m. A Peace Corps volunteer there told me that you could tell if someone turned on an electric iron because the lights all over town dimmed. Fortunately, there weren't many people there wealthy enough to afford an iron.

The town is located on top of a large flat hill and the station is located at the edge of town on a sort of arm of the hill, surrounded on three sides by pine-filled valleys. There are actually four buildings in the complex, all in a line, each about ten meters apart. Starting at the town end, first there is a medical clinic operated by the mission. It was staffed by two American missionary nurses, just out of college, when I visited. Next was a duplex house, with the two sides joined by an open roofed-over patio. The nurses lived on one side & the American station manager and his family lived on the other. What really surprised me about the house is that each half had a sliding glass patio-door leading out to the adjoining patio. The road to San Luis was one of the roughest of the many rough ones I've been on in Latin America. Those patio doors had to have been flown in. There's no way at all they could have survived the trip to San Luis!

Getting back to the buildings, next is a large concrete block utility shed which also enclosed the power generator. Finally, there was the station building, also concrete block with a simple concrete floor. In it was a homemade studio and the transmitter. Running along side the entire complex was a dirt runway. The station manager was also a member of the Missionary Aviation Fellowship.

The station manager was none other than Don Moore. No - not me, another Don Moore! This caused some confusion for the post office in Santa Barbara (town), through which all mail for the department was routed. I often got the other Don Moore's mail. There probably weren't more than two dozen gringos in all the department, mostly Peace Corps, and who would have thought two would have the same name. I never got to met the other Don Moore, however. Although San Luis was only about twenty miles from where I lived on the map, it was about three times that by road, and with those old dirt roads that meant about five hours each way. And, there was only one possible connection a day to get there. I had to take the 5 a.m. Santa Barbara - San Pedro Sula bus and get out at a branch on the road literally in the middle of nowhere. Then I had to wait there, in the dawn light, for about an hour for the rickety old school bus (a worn-out reject from North America) from San Pedro to San Luis. So, I only went to San Luis one time, and of course I picked a weekend when the other Don Moore was out of town. I found out that the other Don Moore sometimes attended church services at a church in San Pedro Sula, so I attended there a few times while in town, hoping to met him, but we never connected.

I did get a QSL from Don Moore. In fact, I've got QSLs from two Honduran stations signed by Don Moore, but different Don Moores. The one is my Radio Luz y Vida QSL. The other is a QSL from La Voz del Junco, 6075, which I issued to myself while I was their volunteer QSL secretary. Actually, I issued myself two while I was at it, ;-).

Odd note: According it Review of International Broadcasting Number 64, page 17, Radio Luz y Vida obtained its shortwave transmitter from station WBBZ in Ponca City, Oklahoma, USA.


This item is placed in the public domain.

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