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Francis C. Hall was born in Iowa in 1909 and moved to Southern California in 1919. His father owned a small store in Santa Ana, and F.C. went to work at an early age. As a high school student, he became interested in radios and electronics. Besides the obligatory homemade radio enterprising kids of the 1920s made for themselves, young F.C. started a part-time business recharging batteries, making home pickups and deliveries. By the time he had reached 18, he was manufacturing batteries at home for sale. The battery business evolved into a prosperous electronics-parts distribution company called the Radio and Television Equipment Company (R.T.E.C. or Radio-Tel). Hall's solid background in electronics and public address systems, which he installed in many Orange County churches, schools, and meeting rooms, made his transition into the music industry almost a natural step.