Captain Arturo Garcia was born in Mexico City, Mexico and raised in San Diego, California. He graduated from the University of California at San Diego with a Bachelor’s degree in Biochemistry and Cell Biology and was commissioned in September 1987 through the Aviation Officer Candidate program. He completed flight training at NAS Whiting Field, Florida and was designated a Naval Aviator in January 1989.
Upon completion of SH-2F Fleet Replacement Pilot training with the “Arch Angels” of HSL-31, Captain Garcia was assigned to the “Magicians” of HSL-35, NAS North Island, California where he served from November 1989 until the squadron’s disestablishment in December 1992. During his tour with the “Magicians,” he deployed as the Operations Officer with Detachment ONE onboard USS FRANCIS HAMMOND (FF 1067) in support of Operation DESERT STORM and as the Maintenance Officer with Detachment THREE onboard USS REASONER (FF 1063) in support of Counter Narcotic operations in South America.
Captain Garcia’s next assignment was at the Naval Post Graduate School, Monterey, California where he graduated in March 1995 with a Master of Science degree in Operations Research. He then reported to the “Seahawks” of HSL-41 for transition to the SH-60B. In December 1995, he reported to the “Wolf Pack” of HSL-45, NAS North Island where he served as the Quality Assurance Officer, Training Officer, Safety Officer and Officer-in-Charge of Detachment ONE. Following his tour in HSL-45, Captain Garcia returned to HSL-41 as an SH-60B Flight Instructor and served as the squadron’s Administrative Officer.
In May 1999, Captain Garcia reported to the “Warlords” of HSL-51, Atsugi, Japan. He served as the Safety Officer and Officer-in-Charge of Detachment SIX onboard USS VINCENNES (CG 49). He completed his tour as the “Warlord” Maintenance Officer. In August 2001, he report as Flag Aide to Commander, Naval Education and Training Command, Pensacola, Florida.
In September 2004, he reported to HSL-43 as the Executive Officer and assumed command of the “BattleCats” on 1 December 2005. During his tour at HSL-43, the “BattleCats” were awarded the 2005 Sikorsky Aircraft Corp Most Improved Maintenance Award and the Captain Arnold Jay Isbell Trophy for Excellence in Anti-Submarine and Anti-Surface Warfare. In March 2007, Captain Garcia reported to The Office of the Secretary of Defense as a Military Assistant and Trip Coordinator. After selection for Major Command-at-Sea, Captain Garcia reported to Amphibious Squadron TWO as the Deputy Commander from September 2009 until the squadron’s disestablishment in March 2009. He served at U.S. Fleet Forces on the Expeditionary Warfare Collaborative Team at Quantico, Virginia until September 2010 when he reported to Amphibious Squadron EIGHT as the Deputy Commander, Captain Garcia became Commodore, Amphibious Squadron Eight in May 2012.
Captain Garcia has accumulated over 2,700 flight hours in Naval aircraft. His personal awards include the Defense Superior Service Medal, the Meritorious Service Medal, the Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal (four awards), the Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal and various unit, campaign and service awards.