Jock Soutar: Radio man
Jock Soutar has lived in Barstow since 1962, when his father, Jim Soutar, started his auto dealerships in Barstow.
Jock was born in San Bernardino at St. Bernadine’s Hospital and graduated from Barstow High. Previous to that, the family lived in Running Springs in the San Bernardino Mountains — a community without a hospital at that time.
Q: Describe a special memory you have in the High Desert.
A: I enjoy the desert and its surrounding areas.
Q: What do you do in your free time?
A: I retired two years ago from the Barstow Unified School District.
Since then I have increased my activities with amateur or ham radio. I am the current President of the Barstow Amateur Radio Club and we participate in many events either using our communications expertise for various civic and radio associated events. Our members are always ready to help if a group needs communications for their events.
Q: Tell us one thing that most people don't know about you.
A: Probably about Amateur Radio being my main hobby.
Q: If you could change one thing about the world, what would it be?
A: I would like to see our economic problems taken seriously.
Q: If you could change one thing about the High Desert, what would it be?
A: An increase in companies opening retail stores here, but that takes a population to support them.
Q: What person, living or from history, would you most like to have dinner with and why?
A: Mitt Romney, hopefully our next president.
Q: Who is someone who had a big influence on your life?
A: My father Jim Soutar. He had a great mind and was very good at the automobile business.
Q: What talent do you most wish you had?
A: Play a guitar or banjo.
Q: What is your favorite quotation?
A: Live Free or Die.
Q: What words of advice do you have for the next generation?
A: Stay in school and get the best education you can.
Q: Tell us about the charities or causes that are close to your heart and why.
A: Barstow CERT and other causes in emergency operations.
Q: What is something you are particularly proud of?
A: My achieving my Extra Class ham radio license. This is the top class in Amateur Radio. Also, being a volunteer examiner for license tests in amateur radio.
Q: What’s your favorite movie and why?
A: I don't watch many movies.
Q: Tell us about your favorite thing about living in the High Desert?
A: Usually the clean air. Summertime can get hot though.
Q: What is the best thing about your job?
A: Being retired.
Q: What book had a significant impact on you?
A: Not much of a book reader. I do read several communications related magazines.
Q: Of all the places you’ve been, what’s your favorite and why?
A: I traveled to Kansas three years ago. Really made me appreciate the High Desert. When I was much younger we traveled a lot of the U.S. and most of the National Parks.
Q: If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would it be and why?
A: I would like to visit the American Radio Relay Headquarters in Newington, Connecticut.
Q: Tell us about one thing you want to accomplish in life.
A: See my six grandchildren succeed in life. I currently have one grandson Zachary Vallo in the U.S. Air force.
Q: What’s your favorite place to eat in the High Desert?
A: Los Domingo's and Canton.
Q: Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
A: Hope to still be alive and in good health.
Q: What’s your favorite guilty pleasure?
A: Smoothies and ice cream.
Q: Is there anything else you’d like to say?
A: Barstow has been good to me and my family in business. I would like to see more businesses succeed. It is depressing to see all the empty buildings.