Boeing and the U.S. Air Force celebrated a historical and much anticipated milestone Thursday when the KC-46 tanker program delivered its first aircraft in front of thousands of enthusiastic employees gathered in the Everett, Wash., factory.
"Today is a beautiful day," said Scott Galley, KC-46 boom shop lead. "It brings me great satisfaction and a feeling of accomplishment to finally see our first delivery. It’s amazing."
Wesley To, a KC-46 systems engineer, said he and a lot of employees have put their “heart and soul into this airplane. We have all worked many hours and weekends to see this day, and everyone is really proud to see it delivered."
Jacob Kwasnik, a KC-46 test program manager with Boeing Test & Evaluation, said he was excited to be part of the first delivery.
“History will long remember this day," Kwasnik said. "The KC-46A Pegasus is the tanker of the future, providing the Air Force with global reach. It’s a great jet, and the customer is going to love it."
Boeing Chairman, President and CEO Dennis Muilenburg commended the Boeing-Air Force team, saying, "While the journey to first delivery hasn’t been easy, our combined One Boeing-Air Force team made customer priorities our own — and reached higher, embraced change and learned from failure — demonstrating what it means to Be Boeing every step of the way."
By Kim Vandlac