Friday, August 26, 2011

#42) In Memoriam - Tom Kokinda

Tom Kokinda at the 2010 Reunion
Tom Kokinda passed away last Tuesday August 23rd at his home in Southern California. He was 74, and worked at Librascope from 1960 until 1992 when he retired as Field Service Manager. His wife, Donna, says that Librascope was a large part of his life. Per Tom's request, there will be no funeral service.

As a tribute to Tom's long service at Librascope, Ray Hand searched all the Librazettes on line for articles about Tom and put together a very nice collage of clippings. You may view this tribute by clicking here.


  1. Today I received the following e-mail from Carl Mandernacht, who worked for Tom:

    I write this with sadness at the passing of Tom Kokinda, but at the same time gladness that for all of my 28 years at Librascope T.K. was a co-worker, good boss, and good friend. I last spoke with him at the Librascope 2010 Reunion and he was hale, hearty, and in good spirits, so it is especially difficult to believe he is gone.

    T.K. was a boss in the spirit of Carl Krohn (the "Director") and John Paul Jones ("J.P."); that is, always calm, cool, collected, and unflappable. Never harsh, when a few words of correction and encouragement would suffice.

    As I thought about Librascope this morning and reflected on all the good times, it dawned on me that this management style was a hallmark of Librascope. In all my years there I never had anything other than good supervisors and bosses; a fact I took for granted while there, but when I took a job in the public sector (a school district) I found good bosses are not necessarily the norm. "Bossy" bosses are more prevalent, and anything but calm and deliberate.

    It seems Librascope made it a practice to hire and promote good people like T.K., and received more from them in return.

    Carl Mandernacht

  2. I'm sad to learn of Tom's passing. I first met Tom in the 60s as a close friend of my dad, John Langman, then later as the only person I knew on my first day as a new Librascope employee in June of 1981. I often went to Tom for advise and encouragement often as I struggled at my new job as a machine shop general helper. He always greeted me with a big smile. I always wanted to work for Tom, but never had the opportunity. Tom passed at the same age as my dad, 74.

    John Langman Jr

  3. Yesterday I received the following e-mail from Joe Fletcher who ran the Newport, R.I. Office for Tom:

    Thank you so much.
    Will cherish these pictures.
    Thank you...and thank Ray.

  4. 1970: My first civilian manager. A comment he made served me well when I managed. "Always assign a little more work than can be accomplished and you will get maximum results." A good man in a good company.
    Dave Beck