Shot, over, end and over: For the last time, a Boeing 747 left the Boeing plant in Everett near Seattle. On Wednesday morning (February 1) at exactly 7:47 a.m. local time (when else?), the aircraft with registration N863GT started its engines. It then rolled slowly towards the runway and on the way there was honored with a water fountain by the airport fire brigade.

Finally, at 8:19 a.m., the last jumbo jet built took off from runway 16 R of Paine Field Airport and descended into the overcast Seattle skies. Flight 5Y-747 (what else?) was bound for Cincinnati, where owner Atlas Air operates a large base. However, the two pilots did not take a direct route to their destination. They took quite a detour. A three-hour detour, to be precise.

After the Boeing 747-8F left Paine Field Airport, it first circled Seattle. It then returned to the take-off location and flew low over the runway coming from the other direction. Despite the freezing cold, many former and current Boeing employees came to the airport early in the morning to watch the spectacle – as did several dozen plane spotters.

After flying over the runway at low altitude (called low pass in jargon), the Boeing 747-8 F headed for eastern Washington state. There is little air traffic there. This helped the crew to implement what they had in mind. She meticulously drew the number 747 in the sky and a crown – as a reference to the Queen of the Skies.

However, the very last jumbo jet will not be in service immediately. He will only be on the road regularly for the customer Kühne Nagel and its Asian subsidiary Apex Logistics from mid-February – primarily on routes between Asia and North America.

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The original of this article “Queen of the Skies says goodbye with a surprise” comes from aeroTelegraph.