Americas : End of an era for a 40-year old DC-6

Northern Air Cargo has retired its last 1950s-era DC-6 airplane with employees gathering on the east ramp at Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport on 30 September to greet the last cargo flight of a Douglas DC-6 aircraft for the all cargo airline. “It is a really sad day and an historic one for this company […]


Anchorage International Airport Northern Air Cargo Wallace Niles


Northern Air Cargo has retired its last 1950s-era DC-6 airplane with employees gathering on the east ramp at Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport on 30 September to greet the last cargo flight of a Douglas DC-6 aircraft for the all cargo airline.

“It is a really sad day and an historic one for this company because we have been flying these for over 40 years,” said Wallace Niles, NAC director of flight operations. One of the things that distinguished the DC-6 from other aircraft was its round Pratt & Whitney R2800 engines with reversible three bladed propellers. The powerful engines allowed for heavy lifting and flights into short airstrips and the DC- 6 is credited with delivering the materials that built the infrastructure of Alaska.

Making its last cargo flight, the plane – with the tail number N6174C – did a low flyby over the runway, then returned to the pattern and made its last in-service landing.

It taxied through an archway of water, a tribute courtesy of two fire and rescue trucks.