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"Queen of the Skies" makes its final landing

Delta plane was last 747 in service in the U.S
Posted at 4:36 PM, Jan 03, 2018
and last updated 2018-01-04 12:12:26-05

Another snowbird flew into southern Arizona, but this one had silver wings, a lot of history, and it will never leave.

"Queen of the Skies."

At the helm is pilot Stephen Hanlon.

"When I first started flying, I looked at it and said how does a plane that big get up in the air," said Hanlon.

The wide-body plane transported hundreds of passengers at a time across the Atlantic every day.

But now, the Delta plane was the last 747-400 passenger aircraft in service in the U.S.

Pinal Airpark was its final landing.

"This one is here to stay.  They'll probably use as many parts off of it as they can, and the rest of it will probably be scrapped. So sad to fly it in and know that it's going to be disassembled."

Two of the plane's final passengers made the trip even more special because they got married 40-thousand feet up.

Holly Rick and Gene Peterson.

"Well, nine years ago we met on this airplane on a military charter in Kuwait.  And for those nine years, we've been flying the airplane together.  We've both been single parents with children.  We got out kids finally to college and said it was our turn.  So the idea came up the last airplane was going away and we said what a memory to get married on the last 747 in the United States of America."

Yes, 747's will still fly in the U.S., but they won't carry passengers.

Other countries will continue 747 passenger flights, but in the U-S, they are now history as other, newer aircraft take to the air.

"So it'll be replaced in name, but never in itself.  It's just a different airplane," said Hanlon.