US to retire F-117 stealth fighter after 27 years

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March 11, 2008 11:10

 
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The world's first attack aircraft to employ stealth technology is slipping quietly into history. The inky black, angular, radar-evading F-117, which spent 27 years in the U.S. Air Force arsenal secretly patrolling hostile skies from Serbia to Iraq, will be put in mothballs next month in Nevada. Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Dayton, which manages the F-117 program, will have an informal, private retirement ceremony Tuesday with military leaders, base employees and representatives from Holloman Air Force Base in New Mexico. The last F-117s scheduled to fly will leave Holloman on April 21, stop in Palmdale, California, for another retirement ceremony, then arrive on April 22 at their final destination: Tonopah Test Range Airfield in Nevada, where the jet made its first flight in 1981.

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