Helicopter Maintenance Magazine announces winner of 2013 Helicopter Mechanic of the Year Award

Helicopter Maintenance Magazine announces winner of 2013 Helicopter Mechanic of the Year Award

9-Mar-2014 Source: HeliMX

Helicopter Maintenance magazine, the number one publication for helicopter maintenance professionals, announces that Derek Weeden has been selected as its 2013 Helicopter Mechanic of the Year Awardrecipient.

Weeden is a helicopter mechanic for DynCorp International, working at the company’s McClellan, CA facility. He has 30 years experience working on helicopters.

After serving for six years in the Army, mostly in the Air Cavalry, Weeden spent about a year working for a crop duster in Central California. He says, “I was fortunate enough to get a job working as a contractor on Air Force HH-1H’s at Hill AFB in Ogden, Utah.” After three years there, he heard through the grapevine that a facility was being created to maintain the California Department of Forestry’s fleet of UH-1F helicopters as well as building their replacements. That was a fleet of modified UH-1Hs, later called Super Hueys. He was excited to be accepted at the beginning of that project, and has remained there for the last 23 years.

Weeden was presented with a trophy and a check for $8,000 at a ceremony at Helicopter Maintenance magazine’s booth at HAI HELI-EXPO 2014 on February 26.

“We congratulate Derek for being selected as the recipient of our 2013 Helicopter Mechanic of the Year Award,” says Fred Polak, editor of Helicopter Maintenance magazine. “We would like to thank our sponsors – Duncan Aviation, ECT, Helicopter Specialties, MD Helicopters, Metro Aviation, Premier Turbines, Vector Aerospace, Sandel, Advanced Aircraft Maintenance, Aeromaritime, Airborne Engines, Bell Helicopter, Concorde Battery, Cool City Avionics and Safran. Our inaugural award was a huge success thanks to their generous support.”

“I would like to thank Helicopter Maintenance magazine and the award sponsors. I would also like to thank the Helicopter Maintenance magazine editorial advisory board for selecting me as the 2013 winner,” says Weeden. “A very special thank you to my boss, Jeff Cavarra for surprising me by nominating me for the award, because until Fred Polak called me, I had no idea that I had even been nominated, let alone chosen as the winner!

“I hope this award is given annually for a long time, so other deserving mechanics who are out there quietly working away can get the chance to be recognized,” continues Weeden. “Last, but not least, I would like to thank the dedicated crew I work with every day, who almost always makes me look good. And of course I would like to thank my wife Becky, who has been married to a helicopter mechanic for 30 years – and that has not always been easy.”

Helicopter Maintenance magazine is making plans for its 2014 Helicopter Mechanic of the Year Award, and Helicopter Specialties has already committed to sponsor the award. An announcement will be made in the magazine when nominations can be submitted for the 2014 award.

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