Lee De Forest was called the father of radio.
A piece of twisted platinum wire earned him the title by which he was known the world over. The wire was the "grid," which in 1906 he built into the vacuum tube, giving the tube a third element and the world an almost magical device from which have stemmed a procession of new discoveries.
His invention made possible radio broadcasting and reception, bringing entertainment and contact with the rest of the world into cities, villages, farms, ships, planes and automobiles.
Although his inventions should have amassed a multimillion-dollar fortune for De Forest, at the time of his death he had only $1,250 cash. When his will was filed with the court, De Forest's attorney said the inventor had personal property that would increase his assets and owned patents that could yield further income, but were not doing so at the time.