March 11, 2012 - 10:58 AM
Patrick Taylor from United States
I began my career at Douglas Aircraft (DAC) Long Beach in 1979 several years after the last DC-8 left the shop. My first job assignment was in bldg.80, dept.546, building the DC-9 nose. The DC-9 nose and fuselage are almost identical to the DC-8, long and sleek. We would sit outside at lunch time and watch the UPS series 70, and Airborne Express series 63 DC-8s takeoff and land at Long Beach Airport. Sadly Douglas Commercial is gone with the last 717 delivery in May 2006. All that remains is bldg. 80 & 84 the original DC-8 and DC-9 shops, Bldg 15 the last WW2 hangar, and the west flight ramp now used for the C-17 program. I remember my first day on the job in 79, one of the veteran mechanics told me, son, they build Fords up in Seattle, but here at Douglas, we build Cadillacs.