Travis Gains First C-17 “Spirit”

The first C-17 cargo aircraft assigned to Travis AFB, Calif., touched down at the base on Tuesday. Dubbed Spirit of Solano, it’s the first of 13 new C-17s destined for Travis and will be on its first mission—flying to Europe—this week. Travis now flies three of the service’s mobility mainstays—C-5 and C-17 airlifters and KC-10 aerial refuelers. A crowd of some 2,000 included Rep. Ellen Tauscher (D-Calif.), who has advocated increasing the Air Force’s C-17 purchase, and who told attendees, “The C-17 has proven itself the world’s most versatile, reliable, and capable aircraft.” She added that confronting the “ever-changing face of global threats and calamities” has “stretched too far” the nation’s airlift capabilities.