American Airlines retires fleet of M-D80 planes
September 04, 2019 06:27 PM
ROSWELL, N.M.— American Airlines officially put its fleet of M-D 80 planes to rest today, and for most of them, the final resting place is Roswell.
"This is history in the making!" said American Airlines agent, Esther Mondragon.
Mondragon took one of the final M-D 80 flights Tuesday morning from Dallas to Roswell to say farewell.
"My God! I'm so excited and yet sad because this is the end of an era— the super 80. This is the end!" Mondragon said.
Twenty- three retired M-D 80s arrived at the Roswell International Air Center Tuesday.
The future of the planes is unclear, but some say the plane was the “backbone” of American Airlines for decades.
"I've been with this airplane for over 30 years. She's been the work horse of our entire fleet,” said American Airlines agent, Jennifer Brown. “She's called a silver bird, and she's just a dear friend to everyone.”
Roswell’s mayor, Dennis Kintigh presented American Airlines CEO, Doug Parker with a key to Roswell as a token of appreciation for the aircraft.
"I, like anyone that joined American in the 80's knows full well how important the MD-80 was and is to American Airlines,” said American Airlines CEO, Doug Parker. “It was how we grew this airline to be the great airline that it is.”
Parker even cracked a few jokes about the vintage plane.
"There are a lot of people that don't really get it— what we all feel today, because the airplane maybe deserves to be retired from our customers’ viewpoints, maintenance viewpoints," Parker said.
For some, the M-D 80 may be gone now, but not forgotten.
"It's just sad to see her go, but we got to move on—take on some new aircraft, and move forward,” Brown said.
Updated: September 04, 2019 06:27 PM
Created: September 04, 2019 06:24 PM
Copyright 2019 KOB-TV LLC, a Hubbard Broadcasting Company. All rights reserved