C-17A Globemaster III AF serial number 04-4135 (CN F142/P135) is assigned to the 97th Air Mobility Wing (AMW) and based at Altus Air Force Base (AFB) in Oklahoma. The 97th AMW is part of the 19th Air Force of the Air Education and Training Command (AETC). 04-4135 was first flown on 29 April 2005 and was delivered to the US Air Force in May of 2005. The jet was previously assigned to the 6th Airlift Squadron/305th AMW/514th AMW and based at McGuire AFB in New Jersey and the 16th AS/437th AMW/315th AMW out of Charleston AFB in South Carolina. This footage of this workhorse airlifter performing for the Oshkosh crowd was uploaded to YouTube by our good friends at AirshowStuffVideos.
The Boeing C-17A Globemaster III was actually developed primarily from the McDonnell Douglas YC-15 prototype. When Boeing and McDonnell Douglas merged in 1997, Boeing bought into the YC-15. However, some design elements from Boeing’s own forward-thinking airlifter prototype, the YC-14, were incorporated into the C-17A. The Globemaster III pays homage to two previous Douglas airlifter designs, the C-74 Globemaster and the C-124 Globemaster II. C-17As perform primarily tactical and some strategic airlift missions. C-17As transport troops and trash the world over.
The airlifter has picked up some notable nicknames, Buddha, Mighty Mouse, Moose, and Barney among them. When required, C-17As are capable of performing medical evacuation and air dropping missions. The C-17A was designed and built to replace the Lockheed C-141 Starlifter transport and to lighten the load on the ultimate USAF hauler- the Lockheed C-5 Galaxy strategic airlifter. The C-17A is also operated by Australia, Canada, Qatar, the United Kingdom, the United Arab Emirates, India, Kuwait, and the NATO Heavy Airlift Wing. Production of C-17As ceased on 29 November 2015.