The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

The Student News Site of Sacramento City College

The Express

Photo credit: Nick Shockey / nshockey.express@gmail.com
A letter from the editor
February 6, 2024

FedEx Donates Boeing 727 to City College

The Boeing 727 named Gideon was formally donated by FedEx to City College’s Aeronautics Department at McClellan Air Force Base. | Trevon Johnson | trejohn12@gmail.com
The Boeing 727 named Gideon was formally donated by FedEx to City College’s Aeronautics Department at McClellan Air Force Base. | Trevon Johnson | [email protected]

Federal Express delivered a package of its own Friday, donating a Boeing 727 to Sacramento City College. Over 200 people attended the arrival of City College’s

newest aeronautics program training tool: a cargo plane named Gideon.

The City College aeronautics hangar at McClellan Park Airfield hosted the donation presentation Friday of the retired FedEx cargo plane to City College. The aircraft was donated for student training in support of City College aviation program.

According to David Sutton, Federal Express managing director of aircraft acquisitions and sales, Gideon is the 64th plane FedEx has donated in the United States since beginning its aircraft retirement program in 1995.

City College President Kathryn Jeffery said the retired Gideon is in good hands.

“Gideon will have a very, very good home with us at SCC. In partnership with the Aerospace Museum of California, SCC initiated an agreement to assure the safety of this aircraft.”

Gideon made its final landing on McClellan’s runway at

9:40 a.m., arriving to a fanfare of applause while “California

Sun” by _ e Rivieras played in the background. United States

Coast Guard Metro Fire Department fire trucks sprayed arches

of water over the nose of the 727 as it taxied up the airfield.

Fed Ex Captain David Shows, First Officer Mike Ware, and

Second Officer Robert Dittman opened Gideon’s door to greet

the crowd.

Dozens of attendees hoisted cameras, cell phones and even

one tablet computer to catch a shot of the 727.

According to Shows, Gideon departed from Roanoke, Va.,

Feb. 17.

While Gideon may seem to be an unusual name for a plane,

the 727’s namesake is the son of Kurt Bohm, a member of the

Memphis FedEx flight crew.

“At FedEx, we have the tradition of naming our aircraft after

the children of employees,” said Sutton. “_ at’s why you will

shortly note the name Gideon on the side of the aircraft.”

Dave Keslar, a senior Ground Support Equipment technician

for FedEx, said consumers tend to forget the global delivery

company relies on a large fleet of cargo planes.

“A lot of times people don’t think of Fed Ex as an airline,”

said Keslar. “[People] think of [FedEx] as package carrier, but we

ship anything from large freight to whales to you name it.”

Speaking at the donation ceremony, Sutton said the

same was true of Gideon.

“_ is Boeing 727-200, registration number N466FE,

serial number 21292l, was manufactured in December

1976 for Eastern Airlines,” said Sutton. “In October

1992, I took the liberty of this aircraft from Eastern.

And until just yesterday, she has been faithfully hauling

packages for Federal Express.

“So after 16 years in passenger service at Eastern
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and almost 21 years cargo service at Fed Ex, in those 37

years this aircraft has accumulated 55,481 flight hours

and 39,722 landings, including her final flight here to

Sacramento,” Sutton said.

City College Aeronautics department chair Professor

Phil Cypret said that while Gideon may be retired,

she’s not finished with her service just yet.

“Gideon will continue to function as an airplane

with the help of the California Aerospace Museum,” said

Cypret. “_ ey have volunteered some repairs as well. So

between Sacramento City College and California Aerospace,

we’ll keep it in operational condition.”

Before Gideon’s arrival at McClellan Park, City College

students and faculty shared their excitement and

speculations about the impact the 727 will have on the

aeronautics program.

City College student Nick Ware, 22, aeronautics

major in the Air Traffic Control program, said he looks

forward to the hands-on experience.

“What’s nice for us is that we will get in there and be

able to use the instruments,” said Ware. “We can look at

them in a book, but [we are not] able to turn the knobs.”

“FedEx has been phenomenal,” said City College

Dean of Advanced Technology Division Donnetta Webb.

“_ is will make the program so much better. We’ll be

able to use the plane for hands-on learning and it has

enough space to hold class inside.”

Jeffery credited Cypret for putting the wheels in

motion to make the donation happen. According to Jeffrey,

Cypret has hoped for a plane for the department for

quite some time.

“I want to thank Phil Cypret,” said Jeffery. “_ is guy is

always doing something at City College to keep us on our

toes. A couple of years [ago], he told us, ‘I think we’ll be able

to get a jet for our students to run on,’ and I’m thinking,

what is Phil up to now? But he pulled off , what I would say,

is one of the biggest coups of the aeronautics program.”

A model of Gideon, pictures, and certificates will be

displayed in Rodda North, 2nd floor.

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