Nebraska Association
of Public Employees

Meet Union Member Sean Case – State Patrol Aircraft Mechanic

Meet NAPE/AFSCME member Sean Case, an Aircraft Mechanic for the Nebraska State Patrol Aviation Support Unit. 

Sean is the only Aircraft Mechanic for the State Patrol’s two helicopters and three fixed-wing aircrafts. He is responsible for inspecting and maintaining these aircrafts to ensure that they are mission-ready whenever the State Patrol requires them. 

“We do these regular inspections and everything has to be torn apart and put back together,” he said. “I’m the sole maintainer, which is daunting at times. But it’s also rewarding at the end of the day when you’re done and you’re walking out the door. It’s rewarding to know that you’ve started something, you’ve finished something, and it leaves this hangar and goes out and flies to support the mission for the State of Nebraska.” 

Sean said his job is about twenty to forty percent turning wrenches, shining flashlights, and using mirrors to find all the nooks and crannies of an aircraft. The rest of the time is all about preparation and documentation. 

“It’s tedious, but it’s important. Safety is the priority,” he said. “Our pilots go out and trust that what they’re flying in has been looked at thoroughly and is a safe piece of equipment to go out and operate. So, the tediousness of it comes from needing to be able to see every single item on the checklist and ensure it gets inspected and documented correctly.” 

A life-long passion for aviation brought Sean to his current position. He has always loved turning wrenches and originally began his maintenance career as a diesel and heavy equipment mechanic. Eventually, Sean knew he was ready for a change. So, remembering how much he loved going to airshows as a kid, he decided to look into a career in aviation.

“My favorite thing about this job is that most mornings, I’m one of the first ones here and just coming in, flicking on the lights, looking out into this hangar, it’s almost nostalgic getting to see all of these helicopters and airplanes that do good for for the State of Nebraska and knowing that I get to be a part of that.”

Nebraska Association of
Public Employees