Boeing Delivers Seymour Johnson AFB’s First KC-46 Pegasus Tanker

Boeing delivered the first KC-46 Pegasus aerial refueling tanker to be stationed at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina on June 12.

Seymour Johnson AFB’s 916th Air Refueling Wing (916 ARW) was selected by the U.S. Air Force as the first Air Force Reserve Command (AFRC) unit to receive the KC-46 tanker which is replacing the service’s aging KC-135 Stratotanker aircraft. Seymour Johnson AFB also marks the fourth military base to stand up tanker operations.

“Seymour Johnson is a base with a strong history in aerial refueling,” said Jamie Burgess, vice president and program manager for KC-46 at Boeing. “We know the Pegasus will be in good hands with the 916th Air Refueling Wing.”

First KC-46 Pegasus lands at Seymour Johnson AFB
The first KC-46 Pegasus lands at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, North Carolina, June 12, 2020. The KC-46 will fall under the 916th Air Refueling Wing, replacing the KC-135 Stratotanker. (U.S. Air Force photo by Ashley Snipes)

This aircraft is the 34th KC-46 Pegasus tanker delivered to the U.S. Air Force. Boeing worked with the Air Force the past several months to prepare the base for delivery of the KC-46, standing up the warehouse, stocking shelves with spare parts, staging ground support equipment and training local airmen.

“There’s a lot we have to do to prepare a base for delivery of their first KC-46,” said Andy Garcia, KC-46 Services leader. “Our team has been moving a million miles per hour to ensure our customer will be ready to operate the airplane on day one.”

The Washington-built KC-46A Pegasus is a widebody, multirole tanker that can refuel all U.S., allied and coalition military aircraft compatible with international aerial refueling procedures. Boeing designed the KC-46 to carry passengers, cargo and patients. The aircraft can detect, avoid, defeat and survive threats enabling it to operate safely in medium-threat environments.

Boeing began developing the KC-46A for the Air Force in 2011 and delivered the first tanker in January 2019. Boeing has now delivered 34 tankers — 21 to McConnell Air Force Base, seven to Pease Air National Guard Base, five to Altus Air Force Base and one to Seymour Johnson Air Force Base.

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