Boeing's First 727 Makes Final Flight To Museum
Boeing's first 727 jet to be produced took a final flight Wednesday after 25 years of sitting at Paine Field in Everett, Washington. The airliner had been donated to Seattle's Museum of Flight in 1991, but it was dismantled before undergoing a long, volunteer-driven restoration at Paine. Wednesday's flawless 10-minute flight to Seattle marked the fruition of a retired Boeing engineer's vision of seeing it fly one last time. The museum will now add it to a future exhibit that will include the airline's 737 and 747 prototypes. "Taking it apart would be very destructive," Bob Bogash told KOMO News during the event. "It would be cut up and put back together ... more like a mock-up instead of a real airplane." Spectators at the departure and destination points caught the Boeing's departure and arrival on video.
Bogash told the station that "hundreds of pilots" applied for the job of ferrying the 727 to Seattle. The honor went to Tim Powell, along with co-pilot Mike Scott and flight engineer Ralph Pascale, who are all experienced 727 crew members, according to the museum. Bogash served on board as safety officer. The first 727 was completed in 1962 and went into service the following year. The three-engine jet was a business risk for Boeing at the time due to a competitive short-haul market and choosy customers, but aggressive promotion helped the 727's sales, according to the company's website. More than 1,800 of the jets were built over 22 years.