Dave Zantow (N9EWO) is Silent Key

I’ve just learned from our friends Dan Robinson and Dean Bianco that Dave Zantow (N9EWO) has died from injuries sustained in a car/pedestrian accident.

From his obituary on Legacy.com:

David William Zantow, age 66, of Janesville, WI passed away on December 6, 2023 at Select Specialty Hospital, Madison the result of injuries suffered in an auto-pedestrian accident. He was born in Janesville on November 8, 1957, the son of Diehl and Joan (Knox) Zantow. The family moved to Beloit and David graduated from Beloit Memorial High School in 1975.

After returning to Janesville, David was employed at Radio Shack until it closed. He was an avid ham radio operator. He will be remembered for being very talented at electronic and computer repair.

David is survived by his mother, Joan Zantow; sister Mary (Paul) Harding; nephews Zack Green and Nick Key. He was preceded in death by his father, Diehl Zantow; sister, Charlotte Key and brother, Richard Zantow.

No services will be held. Entombment will be in Milton Lawns Memorial Park. The family is being assisted by HENKE-CLARSON FUNERAL HOME & CREMATORY. Online condolences may be sent to www.henkeclarson.com

If you’ve been a shortwave radio listener for long, you’ve no doubt read Dave’s articles and reviews on his website Dave’s Radio Receiver Page or in the pages of the Passport To World Band Radio.

Those of us who knew Dave well are still trying to process his sudden death. Many of us had only recently been in touch with him.

From all of the SWLing Post community, we send our love and blessings to Dave’s family and close friends.

We will look into archiving his website.

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18 thoughts on “Dave Zantow (N9EWO) is Silent Key

  1. Dave Kerl N9HF

    I talked to Daves mother yesterday, the 13th, and she told me of Daves passing. He was my friend for nearly 50 years. We shared the interest in radio and I gave him his Novice test in the early 1980’s. We went to ham fests together and played around with many facets of the radio hobby together. I miss the guy. 73 OM KN
    de N9HF

  2. 13dka

    My condolences to his family and friends, this is sad news for everyone! 🙁 Dave was one of the few resources on the internet who wasn’t shy of calling out the bad things he found in radios and occasionally saved me from impulse purchases this way. His reviews and his insights will be dearly missed.

  3. AM Bob

    Very sad news indeed. His website was a great resource on radio gear and his unique style of radio reviewing will surely be missed.

    May he rest in peace.

  4. Les Locklear

    What a great guy and source of radio knowledge. We never met in person but shared many e-mails. He was a virtual vault of knowledge on radio receivers both past and present. My thoughts and condolences to his family.

  5. Patricio Oelckers A.

    This is sad news, Dave was a great support for our hobby, I always read his reviews, and learned a lot from them.

    My condolences to his family

  6. Bob Butterfield

    I would like to add my voice to those who believe that Dave was a great ambassador for the radio hobby and an essential source of information. He will be missed very much. My condolences to his family.

  7. Julio Cesar Pereira

    I’m shocked. Dave was a great reference for me. I always checked his page whenever for his reviews on receivers. Some of these radios I bought based on his opinion. I exchanged emails with him and he replied promptly. My thoughts are with him, his family, friends and this huge community of radio aficcionados just like him. Julio Cesar Pereira PY5WHO from Brasil.

  8. Joel Thorn (N9SHJ)

    This has shocked us all. Dave was one my first contacts when I became a amateur radio operator in 1992 and we have been good friends ever since. I live in Janesville and we communicated frequently on a simplex frequency we have used for over 30 years. The silence on it now is a somber reminder to me of his absence. We traded equipment many times and often worked on projects together and talked each other through things on the radio throughout all of these years. I was a frequent visitor to Radio Shack during his time there and enjoyed his insight he would have on everything there. He had true dedication to the integrity and quality of anything he ever worked on, reviewed or assisted with. He was always there to help ponder a question, do research and give guidance on whatever you would throw at him. I had just had a radio conversation with him as I was driving around Janesville less than an hour before this happened. I am still trying to process this loss of a wonderful friend.

    1. Dave Kerl N9HF

      Hello Joel,
      Its been a very long time since we communicated. Its too bad it is under these circumstances. Send me an email if you would. Im good on QRZ dot com.
      Ormond Beach, Fl.

  9. Chuck Rippel

    What terrible news! My condolences to his family, significant others and to members of our hobby who followed Dave’s many observations regarding radios available. When I think back about Dave, the words Unselfish and fair-minded describe our interaction. Dave was one of the “movers and shakers” in our hobby but in such unique ways.

  10. Chuck E

    This is extremely sad news. I am lucky to have been in email contact with Dave. He always thanked me personally for my meager support of his amazing website. It’s just hard to imagine that I won’t hear from him again nor read new postings on the site.

  11. Jock Elliott

    Well, nuts. I never met Dave in person, but we corresponded by email and he was generous of his time and expertise.

    Our prayers go out to his family.

  12. Julian Stargardt

    Such sad news. Heartfelt condolences to all Dave’s family and friends.

    Dave’s modestly named ‘Dave’s Radio Page’ is a treasure trove of information and opinions about a wide range of radio equipment. See:

    Dave was a courteous and helpful correspondent with robust views.

    I trust Dave’s Radio Page will be maintained as a living legacy to Dave’s memory and as a very useful resource for the SWLing community.

    Julian Stargardt

  13. Daniel Robinson

    Huge loss for the radio hobby. Dave was an interesting guy, and we often debated the aspects of various receivers. Condolences to his family.

  14. Lou

    He will be missed. His news and reviews site have been invaluable. If help is needed with the costs to archive his sites, I’m certainly down to contribute.

  15. Paul

    Devastating news. Sincere condolences to his family and all friends here. I was in regular contact with Dave; what an amazing guy. This is so tragic.


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