C-17 Makes its First Flight

The McDonnell Douglas C-17A transport makes its first flight. The crew of four takes off from the company’s plant in Long Beach, Calif., and lands two hours, 23 minutes later at the Air Force Flight Test Center at Edwards AFB, Calif.

Four years later to the day, the C-17 makes its operational debut, helping to deliver cargo after Hurricane Marilyn devastated islands in the eastern Caribbean Sea. In all, Air Mobility Command, Air Force Reserve, and Air National Guard cargo aircraft airlift nearly 1,000 tons of relief cargo to the Virgin Islands.