Dennis Silver, a well-known engineering face in Utah and some of the neighboring states, passed away June 11 at 73 in Salt Lake City.
He was born in Salt Lake City and at an early age showed an interest in electronics. He had a short-lived on-air radio career in nearby Brigham City, Utah, before turning full-time to the engineering side.
Silver had stints as a Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints missionary and in the Army before settling back in Utah. He built a career as an independent radio/TV contract engineer throughout the desert Western U.S. and became active in translators — licensing and installation. He was a member of the National Translators Association.
John Terrill, president of KULX-TV10, Salt Lake City, worked with Silver in radio and TV starting in 1963. He said, “Dennis was an engineering genius, in AM (he loved it and directional arrays), FM (he built or maintained most all of them at one time or another), and TV where he was active with a lot of stations. At one time or another, he worked for just about every station around the area.”
Terrill adds, “Dennis did a lot of work for small broadcasters, including community and educational stations, in the Intermountain West and never got paid. And still he worked to keep them on the air.”
He also notes Silver’s skills. “He could get just about anything ‘off the air’ back on the air. Mountain top, winter, summer, rain, I am sure Dennis has been to the ‘middle of nowhere’ and came back. Often Dennis would look at the engineering problem, go back to theory, and figure out the answer to the problem. He also did logarithms in his head … He suffered at least two major electrocutions in his life from miswired transmitters (one was new) and survived.”
At his passing, Silver was chief engineer for Terrill’s television operation. Funeral plans are for June 26. Here is a detailed obituary.