The Passing of Bob Kelty, Mobile Radio Resources

Oakland_Tower

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Many of you veteran scanner enthusiasts have in your monitoring post, or have read in the past, the book "Government Radio Resources" published by Bob Kelty. He passed away a few days ago in San Jose. Prior to the days of internet forums and RR, Bob's books were a must for the serious scanner listener.

A link to his obit here: View George Kelty's Obituary on MercuryNews.com and share memories

George Robert Kelty
Jan. 24,1932-March 30, 2020
San Jose, California
George Robert Kelty Jr. (Bob), life-long resident of San Jose was born January 24, 1932 and passed away on March 30, 2020 following a short illness. He is survived by his sister Carolyn Kelty Schwartz, her husband Bill of Pittsboro, N.C. and their four adult children. Private celebration-of-life services are pending.
Bob graduated from Abraham Lincoln High School and attended San Jose State College. He served in the U.S. Navy during the Cold War. Stationed in Japan as a Morse Code intercept operator, he grew to appreciate Japanese culture and learned to speak the language.
Bob's life was defined by an intense interest in radio communications, professionally and as amateur radio operator WA6GEL/WB6DJT. As West Coast District Service Manage for General Electric's radio communications division, he acted as a consultant to numerous local, regional, and state agencies and corporations. He once taught the Royal Hong Kong Police communications staff how to service their new G.E. radio system.
In retirement, Bob established Mobile Radio Resources which provided FCC licensing services to public safety agencies. He also authored "Government Radio Systems Frequency Guides"--a successful line of radio scanner directories which were sold nationwide.It was common for Kelty's books to be carried in vehicles providing medical assistance, firefighting and law enforcement.
Bob's closest friends were other amateur radio operators. He was a pioneer in building and maintaining radio repeaters which allowed communications between operators scattered throughout the Bay Area. He was a well-known and respected mentor to apprentices entering the fields of radio and electronics, guiding many to successful careers.
His voice on the airwaves will be greatly missed.
 

b52hbuff

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I was about to post this. Curious how he had been getting on.

Bob was amazing. I still remember him as a very valuable resource at the Bay Area Scanner group. He always had the best information to share.

I was fortunate enough to be able to give back a bit and help him update some of his radios.

Bye Bob, thanks for all of your help. The Bay Area radio community will never be as well informed..
 

hunseder

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So sad to read this. I have been away from active scanning for a few years, just getting back in the game (SDS100 & TRX-2). Bob's books were the best when I lived in San Jose. I wish we had such detail here in rural Arizona! RIP Mr. Kelty.
 

AB7NI

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Bob Kelty was a friend of mine. When he visited me in Sacramento he stayed at my house. We would travel the area researching radio stuff. I would drive and Bob would handle the radio equipment. He was thrilled when we discovered a new frequency or PL Tone. When ever one of his books was printed he would Fed Ex me a free copy. I really miss those trips with Bob. RIP my friend.
 

Paysonscanner

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Late Hubby and I had nearly all of his books when we lived in California. There was a lot of well researched info in them. Call signs, tones, fire station numbers, etc. I wish we had someone like him here in Arizona. Sorry to hear of his passing. I just pulled 7 of his books off the shelf next to my desk, the Central Valley Region book has a publication date of 2006. It's funny how he signed the first page, calling himself a "Radio Enigmatologist." I wonder why my spell check is red underlining that title!!
 

inigo88

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I’m a proud owner of a few of Bob’s GRS books and they are still fantastic to this day. Truly a huge loss to the Bay Area scanner community.
 

Cambion

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I was really a fan of his work, and bought just about every book he printed. Even updated when he released new versions.

Condolences to the family and friends.

Many of you veteran scanner enthusiasts have in your monitoring post, or have read in the past, the book "Government Radio Resources" published by Bob Kelty. He passed away a few days ago in San Jose. Prior to the days of internet forums and RR, Bob's books were a must for the serious scanner listener.
 

6079smithw

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Damn...wouldn't leave the lot without his Frequency guide and the latest RandyMac Atlas when I first started trucking to the Bay Area.
Still have a few of them on my bookshelf somewhere.

Fair Winds and Following Seas to you, Sir. (from a fellow USN Vet 1965-1969)
 

norcalbusa

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What a shame, the guy sure was a leader and willing to share. I still have one of his "books" of bay area frequencies and organizations- simply classic. Godspeed.
 

Paysonscanner

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Late Hubby and I had nearly all of his books when we lived in California. There was a lot of well researched info in them. Call signs, tones, fire station numbers, etc. I wish we had someone like him here in Arizona. Sorry to hear of his passing. I just pulled 7 of his books off the shelf next to my desk, the Central Valley Region book has a publication date of 2006. It's funny how he signed the first page, calling himself a "Radio Enigmatologist." I wonder why my spell check is red underlining that title!!
Oops, we did have someone like him here in Arizona and I don't know why I didn't remember that when I wrote the above. His name is Dan Rollman and his directories were great. I wish the RR database and wiki were up to the standard both Kelty and Rollman provided. Dan is a much younger man and has moved to Florida, I believe. He is a member of RR and posts occasionally. My Daddy and late hubby kept up with Dan's book and the wonderful online updates he provided. But this thread is about Kelty and his material was accurate. He had a huge amount of material he never published, maps, call sign info, etc.. A neighbor of ours in California showed hubby copies of a portion of the stuff Kelty carried around and nearly all of it ended up in late hubby's notebooks. There are pages from the state telecommunications manual and how Kelty got them is amazing. Hubby had no idea how he did it. Networking is my guess. I think Kelty could have labeled himself as a "esotericist" as well. Hubby told me once he had heard Kelty was quite a character from our neighbor. No one will ever gather that amount of info again given the security conditions we live under now.
 

silverspy

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I’m so sad to hear about this. Bob’s work gave me great encouragement in the pursuit of my radio hobby, and helped spark a quest for frequency intelligence, that has continued to this day. I bought my first Robert Kelty book 27 years ago. I have a fond memory of calling him up at his house in San Jose about 12 years ago, asking him if he had any updated books available. He was glad to talk to me and promptly sent the most recent book up to my place in Reno. “the task of intelligence is never complete”. Rest In Peace, Bob.
 
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