LAUGHLIN AIR FORCE BASE, Texas --
LAUGHLIN AIR FORCE BASE, Texas—Rene Sanchez, 47th Maintenance Directorate aircraft mechanic, was chosen by wing leadership to be the “XLer of the Week”, for the week of April 1, 2019, at Laughlin Air Force Base, Texas.
The “XLer” award, presented by Col. Todd Dyer, 47th Flying Training Wing vice commander, is given to those who consistently make outstanding contributions to their unit and the Laughlin mission.
Sanchez stepped up filling the phase work leader vacancy, pushing out aircraft ahead of schedule and keeping the fleet healthy.
“As a work leader, I teach the team how to do phase inspections on all parts of the aircraft,” he said. “We’ve got a great team, we work together and that produces more jets in the end.”
He made his way to Laughlin’s sister base Columbus Air Force Base, Mississippi, streamlining a new perspective on critical maintenance procedures that weren’t very clear, changing the way maintenance is done on any T-1A Jayhawk in the U.S. Air Force for years to come.
“The old procedures were confusing, so we wanted to come up with a way anybody could understand them,” he said. “The flaps are a main system of the flight controls, so without the flaps there’s no flying.”
Sanchez also traveled to Lubbock, Texas, to fix one of Laughlin’s T-1 Jayhawks that was being held there for repairs, making sure it made its’ way home.
“For the one I fixed the hydraulics pack,” he said. “There was a broken line, so we fabricated a line that would make it work. That tail returned fully mission capable.”
Along with repairing aircraft, he paired up with subject matter experts from a major aircraft manufacturer, Textron, to tackle a critical part discrepancy, clearing three aircraft for flight.
Sanchez has gone above and beyond in his duties, putting the T-1 fleet on his back, but he doesn’t take all the credit.
“I couldn’t make any of this happen without these guys,” he said. “Teamwork is always number one, so I want to thank my coworkers, my supervisors and work leads.”
For making giant strides in getting Laughlin’s T-1’s back in order and stepping up as a leader, Rene Sanchez was awarded the “XLer of the week.”