Thursday, October 11, 2012
 

 

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Stewart Guard base receives two C-17s with extended range capabilities

TOWN OF NEWBURGH  – The 105th Airlift Wing of the New York Air National Guard at Stewart Airport has received its second C-17 cargo aircraft with an extended range fuel tank. US Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, sought the two planes as part of the Wing’s new fleet of C-17s. They replaced the old C-5 fleet.

The first extended range aircraft was delivered to Stewart in late September and the second was delivered on Tuesday night.

Base Commander Col. Timothy LaBarge said the aircraft will “immediately increase our capability and ability to provide vital airlift to Air Mobility Command, the Department of Defense and New York State.”

LaBarge said the typical range of a C-17 could be from Stewart to California, but with the extended fuel tank, the plane could fly without refueling all the way to Hawaii.

Gillibrand is requesting that the Air Force continue an expedited schedule for as many as another four extended range fuel tanks.

“Receiving this upgrade to the C-17 fleet is critical to our defense and homeland security operations, as well as the strength of the Stewart Air National Guard Base,” Gillibrand said. “As one of the Hudson Valley’s largest employers, generating over $200 million in economic activity for the region, this is an important step that can help strengthen our equipment and missions here at Stewart.”

Stewart now has nine C-17s, which have replaced the Vietnam War era C-5s.