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Arizona native working with some of Navy’s most advanced planes

Petty Officer 2nd Class Christopher Arbizu (U.S. Navy Photo)

PHOENIX — An Arizona native is helping keep some of the U.S. Navy’s most advanced planes in the air.

Petty Officer 2nd Class Christopher Arbizu, who grew up in Avondale, is an aviation structural mechanic for the EA-18G Growler, a plane used in electronic warfare.

“The Growler gets to do a lot of really neat missions and they’re easy to take care of to boot,” Arbizu said in a release.

The Growler is equipped to jam both radar and communication systems to disable air defenses.

The planes launch from aircraft carriers, where Arbizu and other crew who maintain them, are stationed.

“In this job you’re always meeting new people and traveling,” Arbizu said.

Arbizu is part of the “Gray Wolves” of Electronic Attack Squadron (VAQ) 142, one of the Navy’s 14 such squadrons. Nearly 600 people — including officers, enlisted men and women and civilians — work in Arbizu’s squadron alone.

“Our team is filled with hardworking and highly qualified professionals who hold uncommon levels of responsibility and accountability in support of our mission: to maintain, fly, and fight the Growler around the world,” Capt. Scott Farr, Commander, Electronic Attack Wing, U.S. Pacific Fleet, said.

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