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Boeing field reps help keep U.S. Marine aircraft flying

As a Boeing-built AV-8B Harrier muscles its way onto runway 5-left at U.S. Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point, N.C., the roar of its engine tells onlookers it’s about to take off. It’s hard to miss.

Introduced in 1985, the Vertical/Short Take Off and Landing (V/STOL) provides close-air support and reconnaissance for U.S. Marines. Currently flying missions in Afghanistan and Iraq, its power, weapons and unique capabilities are saving lives among coalition forces.

A Boeing built AV-8B Harrier

Boeing/Randy Jackson

A Boeing-built AV-8B Harrier taxis into position at U.S. Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point, N.C.

Keeping AV-8Bs mission-ready is a task that falls to Marine aviation maintenance teams, as well as Boeing field service representatives (FSRs) who work shoulder to shoulder with their Marine counterparts.

Boeing AV-8B Powerline and Fuel System FSR Joseph Warrow is considered an expert in his field and understands the complexities of the aircraft.

“If you can work on a Harrier at least from a powerplant perspective, you can pretty much work on any aircraft – military or civilian,” Worrow said.

The aircraft maintenance specialist deployed to Iraq with Boeing to support AV-8Bs.

“Working with some of these young Marines is inspiring,” Worrow said. “We are able to teach them from the ground up lessons we’ve learned about the Harrier. It really gives you a sense of accomplishment and pride.”

“If you can work on a Harrier at least from a powerplant perspective, you can pretty much work on any aircraft – military or civilian.”

Boeing FSRs are deployed around the world to support programs and aircraft. They give customers the ability to get quick answers and solutions to challenges in the field.

Jim O’Neill, vice president and general manager of Boeing Global Services & Support’s Integrated Logistics division, says keeping aircraft like the AV-8B Harrier flying and mission-capable has never been more important.

“Our support teams realize the important part they play every day in support of our U.S. and coalition warfighters,” said O’Neill. “The fact that our FSRs choose to stay with the units for the entire length of the deployments illustrates the commitment of our support teams to all our customers.”

This is the first of a two-part series on Boeing FSR teams supporting the U.S. Marine Corps 2nd Aviation Wing.