Hello, I’m Ray Conner, president and chief executive officer of Boeing Commercial Airplanes. On behalf of the men and women of The Boeing Company, I'd like to congratulate your team on this historic milestone. You’ve successfully brought together the best of American Airlines and US Airways to create one of the world’s premier airlines. Together, you will create a strong infrastructure for future success and develop a fresh culture that combines the best values and principles from each company heritage into the new American.
At Boeing, we look forward to helping American succeed by delivering superior value through our products and services to your team and your passengers. Like you, we connect the world and enrich people’s lives by bringing them closer together through flight. Customers, like you, inspire the Boeing team to constantly find ways to be even better. We know you operate in a tough business environment and that’s why we want to bring you the most innovative and cost-efficient products possible.
We take great pride in the fact that our airplanes, including the 737 MAX and 787 Dreamliner, will serve as a critical part of your company. We thank you for your trust and I can assure you that our team will work very hard to build and deliver the more than 200 airplanes you have on order with us. Over the years, your feedback — good or bad — has been invaluable. It has challenged us to become a better company. I look forward to building on that relationship for years and decades to come.
Again, congratulations to all of you and the new American. I’m confident that you will bring a new standard of service to the flying public and that your complementary networks will offer more choice and better service for passengers as they travel and explore the world.
American was the launch customer for the DC-3 with the first of the famous line delivered to American Airlines in June 1936. The first DC-3 built was the Douglas Skysleeper Transport, and it was the height of luxury. Fourteen plush seats in four main compartments could be folded in pairs to form seven berths, while seven more folded down from the cabin ceiling. The plane could accommodate 14 overnight passengers or 28 for shorter daytime flights.
The DC-7 entered service with American Airlines in November 1953. The DC-7 was the last of the Douglas propeller-powered transports. Introduced in May 1953, it was the first commercial transport able to fly nonstop westbound across the United States against the prevailing winds.
In January 1959, American Airlines entered the jet age by introducing the first nonstop, jet-powered transcontinental service with the Boeing 707, starting service on most major routes months ahead of competitors.
First delivered in April 1964, American ultimately took delivery of 167 727s. This gave American one of the largest fleets of the popular tri-jet.
First delivered in March of 1970. American used the 747 to carry passengers for only a few years, but it served longer as an all-cargo aircraft. American also used 747SPs to launch nonstop Dallas-Tokyo service in 1986.
American introduced the twin-aisle Boeing 767 family of jets into its fleet in 1982 with the B767-200. In 1985, it received the Extended Range 767-200ER, and in 1988, the widely popular 767-300ER, which allowed American to open new transcontinental and Latin American markets. The 767-300ER continues to be a cornerstone of the American fleet.
The MD-80 has been the backbone of the American Airlines domestic fleet. The worlds largest operator of the type, American took delivery of the first MD-80 in May 1983. The introduction of the MD-80 allowed American to rapidly expand its route system and fleet.
Added to its fleet on July 17, 1989, American is one of the largest operators of the 757 having taken delivery of 126 of the single-aisle twin jets that, along with the 767, pioneered the two-crew Glass Cockpit.
In March 1999, American began taking delivery of new, cost-efficient 737-800NG aircraft as part of its fleet modernization plan. The newest 737-800s include the Boeing Sky Interior — a brand new interior that includes a modern, roomier cabin and innovative LED lighting feature.
Building on the success of the 777-200ER, the 777-300ER is the newest, most modern airplane in the American Airlines fleet. Entering service in January 2013, the 777-300ER brings passengers a world-class travel experience to new international markets.
Enhancing Americans fleet renewal efforts is the 737 MAX. The 737 MAX brings the American fleet the best of future engine technologies for unprecedented levels of efficiency, reliability and passenger appeal.
Flying into the new Americans future is the remarkable 787. American will begin taking delivery of more than 40 Boeing 787 Dreamliners for long-haul routes starting in 2014.
Piedmont ordered its first 737 in 1966, and received the first 737 in 1968. Piedmont became the worlds largest 737 operator in 1982. Piedmont merged with USAir in 1987.
Allegheny and PSA both took their first DC-9s in 1967 and Allegheny took the 500th DC-9 built by Douglas two years later. US Airways, successor to Allegheny, retired its last DC-9 in 2001, completing 34 years of service.
The first 727 delivery to USAir took place in 1979, followed by nine more though 1983, including the very last passenger 727 delivered by Boeing. Over the years 727s, were operated by Allegheny, Piedmont, the Trump Shuttle, and PSA, all of which were forerunners of todays US Airways.
PSA, the first U.S. operator of the MD-80, took delivery of its first aircraft in 1980. Following deliveries to both PSA and USAir, the type remained in service with US Airways until 2002.
USAir was a launch customer for the 737-300, with an order for 10 aircraft in 1981. The airline took delivery of the first ever 737-300, delivered in November 1984. US Airways and its forerunners have now operated 397 Boeing 737s for more than 16 million flight hours between 1968 and today.
America West Airlines took its first-ever new airplane, a 737-300, in 1985. This aircraft went on to operate into the 2000s with America West before being retired. America West and US Airways merged in 2005, keeping the US Airways name and the America West call sign Cactus.
Adding six 757s in 1987, America West opened service to Baltimore, Chicago, and New York. Ultimately, America West and USAir took delivery of 27 757s from Boeing in the 1980s and 90s.
Following delivery of Piedmonts first 767, the airline both launched its first long-haul service (between Charlotte and London) and became an early pioneer of ETOPS on the north Atlantic. Piedmont and USAir took delivery of 12 767-200ERs.
Piedmont launched the 737-400 program in 1986 and took first delivery in September 1988. The aircraft was delivered in a non-standard paint scheme for Piedmont, reflecting the transition to USAirs polished livery that was in progress at the time.
With 767-200ERs serving far-flung markets in Brazil and Europe, winglet-equipped and uniquely capable 757s serving Hawaii, Europe, and the Caribbean, and 737s serving as a domestic workhorse, US Airways operates a cost-effective and market-matching fleet of Boeing aircraft.