, 2022-12-08 21:16:00,
The jet transformed an industry, bringing luxurious amenities and lengthy nonstop flights to the masses — all in a design that was both enormous and elegant. But the reign of the mighty 747 has ended, and Boeing says the last plane left its assembly line this week, after 54 years of production.
“For more than half a century, tens of thousands of dedicated Boeing employees have designed and built this magnificent airplane that has truly changed the world,” Kim Smith, Boeing’s vice president and general manager of the 747 and 767 programs, said as the company announced the end of production.
Since production of the 747 began in 1967, Boeing says, 1,574 of the airplanes were built. It started carrying commercial passengers in January 1970, when Pan Am used a 747 for a flight from New York to London.
The huge jet that shrank the world
The 747 was a hit at the Paris Air Show in 1969, and more than two dozen airlines raced to put the airliner into service, luring travelers with the 747’s promise of comfort and unprecedented range.
People in the U.S. suddenly had an appealing option to visit Hawaii — which was then a very young state. And cities around the world became more interconnected by direct flights.
By the end of 1971, international airlines including Air Canada, Air India and Japan Airlines were using the aircraft.
The huge plane was touted as a…
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