- This article was considered for deletion at Wikipedia on October 25 2014. This is a backup of Wikipedia:Margaret_Iaquinto. All of its AfDs can be found at Wikipedia:Special:PrefixIndex/Wikipedia:Articles_for_deletion/Margaret_Iaquinto, the first at Wikipedia:Wikipedia:Articles_for_deletion/Margaret_Iaquinto.
Margaret King was born in New Haven, Connecticut. She was awarded a Bachelor Degree in Russian from Boston University, studied Slavic Linguistics at the University of Chicago and obtained a Masters in Education from Roosevelt University in Chicago. She spent many years as a reading specialist, assisting teachers to improve the reading skills of their students. One of her many interests was amateur radio. She passed her novice exam in 1976. Her call sign was WN1ZFX. She moved to Melbourne, Victoria shortly after marrying in 1977. She quickly applied for an Australian licence and received the call sign VK3NQQ. [no citations needed here]
In Melbourne, Maggie worked for the Council of Adult Education and published a kit for literacy tutors teaching adults how to read, which remained in use for many years. She continued to enjoy her radio hobby, working many stations all over the world using her favourite mode of communication, morse code. [no citations needed here]
In 1981, she gave birth to her first son Ben who was followed by Josh in 1983. The family was living near Ballarat, Victoria in those days and she was one of the few female members of the Ballarat Amateur Radio Group. In 1990, living in Colac, Victoria with her family, Iaquinto (now VK3CFI), made contact with Musa Manarov (U2MIR) onboard the Russian Space Station Mir. She was delighted to have an opportunity to use her Russian language skills as well as enjoying the excitement of speaking to someone in space. Maggie spoke to Musa nearly every day. These contacts took place in her radio shack, outside with her handheld radio and sometimes in her car while sitting in traffic. What she enjoyed most was sitting in the back yard in the evening with her boys, talking to the cosmonauts on her handheld, watching the point of light from the Mir Space Station move across the night sky.
Maggie made history when she assisted Musa in setting up his packet radio station on Mir, which resulted in Maggie and Musa making the world’s first computer to computer connection between an amateur on earth and a cosmonaut in space. When Musa returned to earth in May 1991 after 175 days in space, Maggie continued to contact the cosmonauts on Mir. Sergei Krikalev, U5MIR, spoke to Maggie nearly every day for a year. Many primary and secondary school students in Colac were able to speak to the cosmonauts on Mir from Maggie's radio shack.
Her regular contact with Sergei and other cosmonauts led to an invitation in 1994 from NASA for Maggie and her family to visit Sergei in Houston, Texas where he was training for a shuttle mission at NASA’s Johnson Space Centre. [no citations needed here]
- Ron Wilkinson Achievement Award from the Wireless Institute of Australia in recognition of outstanding achievement in packet radio communication with the MIR Russian Space Station. Margaret is the only female radio operator to receive this award.
- 2006 IT Teacher of the Year from the Victorian Information Technology Teachers Association.
- "Obituary". Herald Sun. http://tributes.heraldsun.com.au/notice/55462012?random=1406154176956. Retrieved 24 July 2014.
- (3 October 2011). Cosmic Conversations, ABC Online
- Keane, Theresa (2 September 2013). Typing teacher became an authority on IT, The Age
- Gippsland On Line Magazine - November 2004
- VITTA Award Recipients