BDeputy D.J. Lansaw was born and raised in Danville, Illinois. He attended the local schools, and graduated from Danville High School.
After graduation, Deputy Lansaw found a job working with a surveyor crew. He learned how to use the instruments and perform surveys. He stayed in this field working as both a draftsman and an assistant on a survey crew for several years.
Along the way, Deputy Lansaw picked up a new hobby. He learned to play the guitar. Not long after, he and his friends created a country-rock band called ‘D.J. and the Initials’. Although he describes himself as being somewhat shy, he found the courage to come out his shell, and be the lead singer and guitar player for his band. Being in a band helped Deputy Lansaw find his voice both on and off the stage.
During this time in his life, Deputy Lansaw worked full time for the City of Dansville in the Engineering Department. He spent his weekends traveling around the area and performing with his band.
Around 1987, he decided to look for a surveying or drafting job in Fort Myers, Florida. His friends had told him what a great area it was. The beautiful, snowless weather was a big draw as well. He took a little time off from his current job in Illinois, traveled to Fort Myers, and quickly found a job. He went back home, gave his notice to his employer, and five weeks later made Fort Myers his permanent home.
Once he got settled, his interest in his music was still there. However, he found the area so spread out and saturated with other musicians that trying to follow this dream slowly fizzled out. Not one to forget his creative side, Deputy Lansaw tried Country Western dancing, and found a new passion. He learned how to Line Dance, and soon became a dance instructor.
After 9-1-1 occurred, Deputy Lansaw volunteered with Lee County’s VOICE program (Volunteer Observers Impacting Community Effort). He liked the law enforcement field so much that he decided to put himself through the Southwest Florida Criminal Justice Academy in Fort Myers. In 2005, he earned his law enforcement certification. He worked with the Lee County Sheriff’s Office for nine months while going through the Field Training Officer (FTO) program.
Being born and raised in a small, rural farming community in Illinois, Deputy Lansaw soon found that the larger city life was not for him. He applied with the Hendry County Sheriff’s Office (HCSO), and on January 8, 2007 he was hired as a deputy, and assigned to the Port LaBelle area. He patrolled and protected this community for about two years.
When HCSO Sheriff Steve Whidden was elected, Deputy Lansaw transferred to the Community Oriented Policing (COP) Unit. He worked in this position for another two years.
Deputy Lansaw then landed in his current position as a Civil Process Server with the HCSO Civil Department. He spends his days delivering subpoenas. When the courts need a witness or defendant, he is responsible for tracking these individuals down. Deputy Lansaw spends a great deal of time on the phone trying to contact and located people who he needs to serve papers to. He also uses computer tools to assist in this process as well. Not surprising, this job comes with a lot of emails and paperwork as well.
Like most positions within the sheriff’s department, being a Civil Process Server has its ups and downs. Although there are tough times, at the end of the day Deputy Lansaw stated “I really enjoy the people I work with as well as working here in a small-town farming community”. He noted that Lee County was “just too fast paced” for him, and he prefers the laid back atmosphere that Hendry County offers.
Deputy Lansaw has been married to his wife, Sandra, for nearly 10 years. He has two daughters. One lives in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, and the other is in Ruidoso Downs, New Mexico. He also has several grandchildren and one great-grandchild.
When Deputy Lansaw isn’t working, he enjoys singing, playing his guitar and dancing. He also has a big interest in firearms, and does his best to stay up-to-date on the latest technology, trends and weaponry options on the market. He would like to spend more time being involved in cowboy action shooting as well.
A very soft spoken and quiet man, Deputy Lansaw continues to make a difference one day at a time. Being a Civil Process Server has its challenges, but his love for the community and the sheriff’s department is quite evident. There is an obvious love for the people of Hendry County as well as his family of coworkers at the department. Thank you Deputy Lansaw for your years of service to our great little community!
With the ongoing news coverage of police shootings in this nation and the negative attitude toward the police nationwide, the staff of the Caloosa Belle has decided to show our support to the men and women of the Hendry County Sheriff’s Department who protect us every day In the following weeks we will be introducing you to them and letting you know what they do to keep you safe every day.