MEET OUR FOUNDER
Founder Radio Communications Service (RCS)
It was 1952, the year the Radio Communications Service was founded by Lovell Killpack. At that time, Lovell took interest in radio broadcasting, and passed the radio broadcasting exam at the age of 16. He began work with a local radio broadcasting station until he was drafted to join World War 2 directly out of high school. Upon completion of my service in the war I attended the local university and received a bachelor’s degree in radio broadcast in 1949. I returned to work at the radio station transmitter and became the chief engineer. This was about 1950.
Here’s the story in his own words:
On my way home from the transmitter one day after work in 1952 a Motorola representative came to me and asked me if I would do the service work for 2 large Motorola systems that had just been sold to Provo city and Thornrock Products. Motorola sold the systems and maintenance agreements but needed help to perform the work. So, on that, I decided to leave the radio station to start a little business, and we became Utah’s first Motorola Service Station (MSS).
I had $600 to invest and that was the beginning of Radio Communications Business. I purchased meters, parts, and test equipment and worked out of my home until we purchased our own service shop in Orem in about 1959. This building was an old service station that we converted for our use. In fact, we still operate from the same old service shop today, although it has since undergone expansion and drastic renovation.
The business continued to grow, I hired some employees, and my son Chris also began working with me. In 1978 Chris and I accepted short-term ecclesiastical assignments that took us away from the business, so we left the business in the hands of two other employees. One month before my assignment was complete one of these employees asked if we’d be willing to sell the business to him. He had been working with the customers and began talking to them about taking over the business and starting his own service shop. Our customers remained loyal to Radio Communications Service, but it caused intense levels of stress and concern about the future of the business.
When Chris returned he decided to rejoin the business and asked if he could continue forward and make a career out of it. He began preparing to take over by entering engineering school and became very competent. The business’ needs grew and we filled most of the needs all on our own, including learning how to write computer code so we could build our own software and improve our internal efficiency. It took a total of 10 years to modify and debug over and over and over, then we got the software right, but it became very stable. Truthfully, the core infrastructure was so stable and forward looking that it is still used today for some of our operations.
As time went on I began to phase out until I completely handed off the business and Chris continued on. His brother Kim also later joined him.
The business evolved as technology changed rapidly. We continued to reinvent ourselves and our value, always learning from the past. Many within the two-way radio industry, including the manufacturers, were preparing themselves for two-way radios to fade away. While there certainly was a period of time when two-way radio needs receded, it is fair to say that today the needs are growing and that the advent of digital ratio and other new features are giving the new digital radios advantages that trump many other available options.
The business continues to run successfully today by Lovell’s son, Chris. Built on a solid foundation, and with a third generation working in the family business, it’s stronger than ever today.