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Edinburg Native Supports U.S. Navy Aviation Squadron on Missions Around The Globe

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Huizar-Hamilton graduated in 2018 from Edinburg High School. Photo by Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Beverly Taylor, Navy Office of Community Outreach
Huizar-Hamilton graduated in 2018 from Edinburg High School. Photo by Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Beverly Taylor, Navy Office of Community Outreach

Texas Border Business

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By Ashley Craig, Navy Office of Community Outreach

NORFOLK, Va. – Petty Officer 3rd Class Haley Huizar-Hamilton, a native of Edinburg, Texas, serves the U.S. Navy assigned to Airborne Early Warning and Control Squadron (VAW) 120.

The skills and values needed to succeed in the Navy are similar to those found in Edinburg.

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“Growing up, I learned the importance of being responsible for myself,” said Huizar-Hamilton. “It was very hard growing up because my mom was always working and we were always at school. I had to be independent and watch over my brothers and sisters. We had to take care of each other and be responsible for each other.” 

Huizar-Hamilton joined the Navy five years ago. Today, Huizar-Hamilton serves as a logistics specialist.

“I joined the Navy because I wanted to go to college but I didn’t want to pay for it,” said Huizar-Hamilton. “I also wanted to experience overseas life. I come from a really small town, so I’m just used to that aspect. We’re a predominantly Hispanic community and I wanted to experience different cultures and how other people live.” 

Members of VAW 120, also known as the “Greyhawks,” fly and maintain the E-2C/D Hawkeye and C-2A Greyhound aircraft. 

Known as the Navy’s “digital quarterback,” the Hawkeye gives the warfighter expanded battlespace awareness. The Hawkeye’s command and control capability makes it a multi-mission platform through its ability to coordinate concurrent missions such as airborne strike, land force support, rescue operations and support for drug interdiction operations. The Hawkeye is capable of launching from and landing aboard aircraft carriers.

The Greyhound provides high-priority logistics support to carrier strike groups around the world. A versatile support workhorse for the Navy for nearly 40 years, the Greyhound is capable of taking off from and landing aboard aircraft carriers at sea to deliver cargo, mail and passengers, in addition to its tactical and search and rescue roles, according to Navy officials. 

This year commemorates 50 years of women flying in the U.S. Navy. In 1973, the first eight women began flight school in Pensacola, Florida. Six of them, known as “The First Six,” earned their “Wings of Gold” one year later. Over the past 50 years, the Navy has expanded its roles for women to lead and serve globally and today our women aviators project power from the sea in every type of Navy, Marine Corps and Coast Guard aircraft. According to Navy officials, our nation and our Navy are stronger because of their service. 

Serving in the Navy means Huizar-Hamilton is part of a team that is taking on new importance in America’s focus on rebuilding military readiness, strengthening alliances and reforming business practices in support of the National Defense Strategy.

“The Navy provides security,” said Huizar-Hamilton. “One of my favorite things about the Navy is being out to sea. People don’t get to see a lot of what happens in the ocean. I’ve seen a lot of cargo ships and ships from other countries that a lot of people don’t get to see. Being able to have eyes on every aspect of the world, it’s important for us to be out there in case anybody needs help.”

With 90% of global commerce traveling by sea and access to the internet relying on the security of undersea fiber optic cables, Navy officials continue to emphasize that the prosperity of the United States is directly linked to trained sailors and a strong Navy.

Huizar-Hamilton has many opportunities to achieve accomplishments during military service. 

“I’ve always been a hard worker and since my very first command, I’ve been able to be put in charge over people who have been higher ranking because I am responsible and I have leadership skills,” said Huizar-Hamilton. “I feel like not a lot of people get to say that. Knowing they put you in charge because you are a leader and you are responsible looks really good to other people.” 

As Huizar-Hamilton and other sailors continue to train and perform missions, they take pride in serving their country in the U.S. Navy.

“My service means I’m contributing to the defense of the United States and I’m here to make a difference,” said Huizar-Hamilton. “It shows other people they can make a difference, too.”

Huizar-Hamilton is grateful to others for helping make a Navy career possible.

“I want to thank my mom, Maria Robledo,” added Huizar-Hamilton. “Being in the Navy has been kind of hard because I don’t have family with me and I grew up with my family. Knowing anytime I call her she will answer the phone and give me advice means so much to me.”

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