Boeing Dreamlifter transports 500,000 protective masks to Utah

July 01, 2020 in Community

Completing its 12th COVID-19 mission since the pandemic started, Boeing transported a half million protective masks to Utah aboard a Dreamlifter on Wednesday. The shipment of personal protective equipment will be used for students and teachers across Utah when school begins.

As part of this mission, H.M. Cole, a custom clothing store, donated 250,000 masks – with 100,000 of those masks sized for children. Cotopaxi, an outdoor gear brand based in Salt Lake City, donated an additional 250,000 masks and converted one of its jacket manufacturers for temporary face mask production.

“As students return to school this fall, it will be important that they have masks available,” said Utah Gov. Gary R. Herbert. “We thank Boeing and these partners for everything they’ve done to support our ‘A Mask for Every Utahn’ initiative and make it possible for our students to have these masks and help keep Utahns safe.”

Boeing donated the cost of the mission transport into Utah, with Atlas Air operating the flight on behalf of Boeing. Flexport and UPS helped coordinate customs assistance for the PPE shipment.

Airport ground crews in Nagoya, Japan, work through the night to load 500,000 protective face masks bound for Utah students and teachers. (Atlas Air photo) Boeing donates masks

Ted Kerzie, director of Strategic Deterrence Systems, represented Boeing as the speaker at a press conference following the delivery and emphasized Boeing’s legacy of partnership in the state dating back to 1927.

“We have a long history of working alongside Utahns to do remarkable things, from building commercial jets to building and maintaining systems that stand ready to defend the nation around the clock,” said Kerzie. “We’re happy to partner with Utahns once again as we navigate through this pandemic together.”

To date, Boeing has helped transport over four million units of PPE – including the in-house production of more than 39,000 3D-printed face shields – to front line health care professionals and other communities in need.

“Boeing is proud to continue to lend our resources as we work together with both government and private industry to stop the spread of COVID-19,” said Dave Calhoun, Boeing President and CEO. “Today’s delivery, our 12th COVID-19 response airlift mission, will help connect vital PPE to students and teachers across the state of Utah, so they have the tools they need to safely and confidently return to their classrooms.”

Dan Cahill