Dedication to the station

by Peter Twitchell

In the 24 years I worked at the KYUK radio station there were two notable radio engineers who came to KYUK. There were a few of them throughout the years, but Bob Tinkle was there in the 70s. He was truly an interesting gentleman, very resourceful and knowledgeable about electronics.

Once that I know of he took a sardine can and used it to bring the radio signal back to life. Parts weren’t easily accessible and we didn’t have same-day service. I would say that KYUK Radio AM almost went dark except that Bob Tinkle used the can and made it possible to restore the signal.

Bob knew electronics, was resourceful and knowledgeable enough to keep our radio signal on for a long time.

One winter I bought a Ford Grabber. It had a V8 under the hood and was streamlined and fast. That winter I took Bob down to the Johnson River. It started snowing and blowing but we avoided getting stranded out on the ice road.

Bob was also an interesting man. He was talking about the Scientology group that he belonged to and told me that if he wished he could have an out of body experience. I asked him what he meant and he said that he could use his mind to enter the mind of a fox sitting out on the tundra. Of course I chuckled ha ha ha ha ha!

I asked him how he did it and he said it takes deep concentration. I was so amused that a man could focus his mind so intensely that he could be another body like a fox! That was the end of our conversation that day ha ha ha ha ha!

That kind of thing was over my head and mind. Bob was one of the better engineers we got who was easy going and easy to get along with.

KYUK Radio at one point almost went dark, in other words shut off. If this had happened, I heard a discussion once, that it could have been gone forever.

The other radio engineer that we got and were fortunate to have was Joe Seibert. He was from College Station, Texas and graduated from Texas A&M. He had worked with Texas Instruments computer chips manufacturer. Joe had also worked with CNN at Epcot Center at Disney World. He covered football, basketball, and other sporting events from mobile trucks staying on the road for about a year. But that got awfully old quickly for Joe and he was looking for a new place to work at.

About that time an ad in the Trades paper caught Joe’s eye. It was about a job for a radio/tv engineer in Bethel, Alaska. Joe thought it would be a challenging job to work in the bush for the Bethel Broadcasting Inc as a television radio/engineer.

Texas was hot in October and the idea of coming up north to a cooler climate appealed to him and so Joe contacted the KYUK station manager and after 10 minutes was offered the job in Bethel, Alaska.

The rest is history. Joe Seibert was a great television radio engineer extraordinaire. The last time I saw him he was still at KYUK in 2016. Thank you Bob Tinkle and Joe Seibert for your hard work at KYUK Radio/TV and your dedication to the station.