Finally, the first Boeing KC-46 Pegasus tankers were delivered to the USAF. Not one but two tankers were delivered in the ceremony, a nice effort at a joke by Boeing having left everyone thinking it would only be one. Then again, when you have that many of them sitting around, I guess it should have been even more! The ceremony took place on one day and the delivery was the following morning.
The jets left from Paine Field just after sunrise. That is sunrise if you don’t have clouds on the horizon. The sun had barely squeaked above those when the two jets took off as Medusa 1 and 2. They were preceded by a McConnell AFB KC-135R – the aircraft that they will be replacing. It got airborne in very limited light and headed for Kansas. Then the two new jets lined up in turn and departed. No flybys or wing waggles. Just gear up, switch to departure frequency and off into the steadily brightening sky. Avoid the traffic inbound to SeaTac and off you go. Lots more should be following soon while efforts continue to fix the issues with the camera system and the underwing hose and drogue pods.