Support for LAist comes from
We Explain L.A.
Stay Connected

Share This

This is an archival story that predates current editorial management.

This archival content was written, edited, and published prior to LAist's acquisition by its current owner, Southern California Public Radio ("SCPR"). Content, such as language choice and subject matter, in archival articles therefore may not align with SCPR's current editorial standards. To learn more about those standards and why we make this distinction, please click here.


Marking The End Of An Era, The Final Boeing C-17 Leaves Long Beach

Before you
Dear reader, we're asking you to help us keep local news available for all. Your tax-deductible financial support keeps our stories free to read, instead of hidden behind paywalls. We believe when reliable local reporting is widely available, the entire community benefits. Thank you for investing in your neighborhood.

It was the end of an era at the Long Beach Airport today, as the final Boeing C-17 Globemaster III cargo plane departed.

The L.A. Times reports that hundreds of past and present Boeing employees gathered at the aerospace company's assembly facility in Long Beach to partake in a "closing ceremony" of sorts: with the departure of this last C-17, Boeing formally ended production of the plane that was once known as one of the most advanced cargo planes in the world. According to the Times, the C-17 is the last major military or civilian aircraft to be built in California.

During World War II, the plant in Long Beach Long Beach was part of an enormous aircraft manufacturing complex that employed tens of thousands of people who built MD-80 jetliners, Boeing 717s and B-17 bombers. But the decline in such manufacturing after the Cold War has been a blow to the once thriving aerospace industry in Long Beach.

In 2013, Boeing announced that there weren't enough orders to keep the 25-acre Long Beach plant open, and is expected to close by the end of the year, reports ABC-7. The Times writes that Boeing said that it expects to lay off over 700 of its workers in Southern California.

Support for LAist comes from

The plane will be kept in San Antonio before it's delivered to Qatar, reports ABC-7.

If you're into planes, you'll like these videos of the C-17 soaring up, up, and away over Long Beach: