WASHINGTON — Congressman Ron Estes (R-Kansas) will participate in ceremonies Friday, Jan. 25, marking the first delivery of the KC-46A Pegasus refueling tankers to McConnell Air Force Base. Prior to the tanker being delivered during a ceremony at 3 p.m. CT, Rep. Estes will fly on the aircraft as it travels from Boeing headquarters in Everett, Wash., to Wichita.
“The delivery of the state-of-the-art KC-46 tankers marks a significant milestone in rebuilding our military and supporting McConnell Air Force Base. The Airmen at McConnell who have trained and prepared for this delivery will make our country proud as they become the first in the nation to receive this new aircraft. I look forward to joining members of our military and community to mark this important victory for Wichita, the Air Force and our country.”
The KC-46 revolutionizes aerial refueling capabilities to support military missions and personnel around the world. The new aircraft will replace KC-135 tankers, which were first delivered in 1957 during the administration of President Dwight Eisenhower.
Since entering office, Rep. Estes has helped mediate the relationship between the U.S. Air Force and Boeing to ensure delivery of the KC-46. In addition, throughout the budget process to secure the KC-46, Rep. Estes led a bipartisan letter with 47 signatures of Members representing 20 different states that helped secure three additional KC-46 aircraft than what was originally proposed for the FY19 defense bills. Rep. Estes has also voted for the NDAA numerous times that not only funded the procurement of the airframe, but the training of the crews at McConnell AFB waiting to receive the KC-46.
Ron Estes is a 5th generation Kansan and represents Kansas’ 4th Congressional District in the U.S. House of Representatives. He serves on the House Committee on Ways and Means.