Bob Lasinski, helicopter mechanic for St. Louis County Police Department, recently received the prestigious 2006 Technical Specialist of the Year award, sponsored by the Airborne Law Enforcement Association (ALEA). Bob is the only two-time winner of the award in the history of the ALEA. This award identifies and recognizes an individual whose efforts or actions in maintaining or repairing aircraft operated by a law enforcement agency were performed in extraordinary manner, above and beyond what is normally expected, and have brought distinction upon themselves, their department and/or ALEA.
Since 1981, Bob has been the sole provider for maintenance and integration of six helicopters and one fixed-wing aircraft. In the past 10 years, the unit has never been without an aircraft to provide patrol for its officers because of a maintenance issue. Bob has dedicated his time and too often put the job before family needs to ensure that the department can continue the level of service that it provides.
Sergeant Derek Dunmire, who nominated Bob for the award, says, “I’ve visited other operations in our chosen vocation. Frequently, the conversation turns to maintenance issues and some of the trials of meeting the needs of a unit. When I describe our maintenance program and explain that it’s provided by one person, the response is always the same: ‘How does one person keep up?’ My response is always the same: Every unit needs a Bob.”