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C-17A S/N 02-1119
Accepted - May 8, 2004 
Assigned to the 172d Airlift Wing (ANG)  Allen C Thompson Fld, MS 





Maj. Gen. Harold Cross, Mississippi Adjutant General prepares to board the Spirit of Sonny Montgomery, Mississippi ANG's last C-17.


The Spirit of Sonny Montgomery" Soars Over the Fence

By Gene Duval - Boeing

The final C-17 Globemaster III for the Mississippi Air National Guard’s squadron was delivered last Wednesday from (Boeing's) Long Beach facility where the giant airlifters are assembled. Maj. Gen. Harold Cross, Mississippi Adjutant General, was at the controls when the aircraft left Southern California, heading for its home base in Jackson, Miss. When the airplane arrived in Jackson Wednesday afternoon, it was cheered by a crowd welcoming the last of the eight C-17s under contract to the Mississippi Air National Guard.

 The delivery event was attended by more than 30 Boeing employees and several suppliers to the C-17 program. “The C-17 is undoubtedly the most versatile, robust and reliable airlifter in the world,” said Gen. Cross, the headline speaker at the event. “The technical genius and commitment to quality of the Boeing folks who design, build and maintain this wonderful machine just amazes me.” One of the employees attending Wednesday’s event was Rosie Romero, an office assistant in the Supplier & Materials Management organization. "Listening to the General’s remarks this morning made me feel proud to be a member of the team that makes the C-17," she said. "I’ve worked here for 15 years, and it makes me feel good every time I hear the customer talk about the wonderful work being done for the country by the C-17. 

The C-17, now at home in Mississippi , is named the Spirit of Sonny Montgomery, after the legendary Congressman and author of the G.I. education bill. It’s only the fourth C-17 to be named after an individual; the Spirit of Sgt. John Levitow (a Medal of Honor recipient), the Spirit of Bob Hope and the Spirit of Strom Thurmon were the others.

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