Airline president honors technicians, statue dedicated to Museum

Alaska Airline President Brad Tilden photoSEATTLE, Aug. 12, 2010--In a ceremony at The Museum of Flight on Aug. 11, Alaska Airlines and the Aircraft Mechanics Fraternal Association (AMFA) celebrated Charles E. Taylor, the machinist who worked with the Wright Brothers and built the engine used in their first powered aircraft. The afternoon celebration was held next to an Alaska Airlines 737 airliner that was positioned inside of the Museum's parking lot adjacent the runways at Boeing Field. The event also marked the dedication of a bronze bust of Taylor to the Museum from the AMFA.

Speakers at the event included Alaska Airlines President, Brad Tilden; Fred Mohr, Alaska Airlines Vice President of Maintenance and Engineering; AMFA National Director, Louie Key, and the great grandson of "the first aircraft mechanic," Charles E. Taylor II. The outside of the airliner at the ceremony sported a new logo--saluting Taylor and Alaska Airlines technicians--displayed next to the main cabin door. The Taylor sculpture will be on permanent display in the Museum's gallery devoted to the Wright Brothers and the early history of aviation.

Photo: Alaska Airlines President Brad Tilden at Museum of Flight ceremony. Photo courtesy The Museum of Flight.

Charles Taylor Lecture

On Aug. 14 at 2 p.m. there will be a lecture and book signing at the Museum by Peter J. Unitt, based upon his biography of Charles E. Taylor, "An American Original - Charlie Taylor."

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The non-profit Museum of Flight is one of the largest independent air and space museums in the world. The Museum's collection includes more than 150 historically significant air- and spacecraft, as well as the William E. Boeing Red Barn® - the original manufacturing facility of the Boeing Co. The J. Elroy McCaw Personal Courage Wing displays 28 World War I and World War II aircraft from the United States and other countries including Germany, Russia, and Japan. Over 30 aircraft representing the first century of aviation are displayed in the all-glass T.A. Wilson Great Gallery. The evolution of space flight and a look into the future are presented in the exhibit, Space: Exploring the New Frontier. The Airpark includes outdoor displays including the first jet Air Force One, a supersonic Concorde airliner and the prototype Boeing 747 jumbo jet. Interactive displays in The Flight Zone provide educational and entertaining activities for young children. The Museum's aeronautical library and archival holdings are the largest on the West Coast. More than 140,000 students are served annually by the Museum's on-site and outreach educational programs--the most extensive museum-based youth aviation and space education program in the country. The Museum is the only air and space museum in Washington State that is both nationally accredited with the American Association of Museums and a Smithsonian affiliate.
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