Published January 25, 2016
In 1966 the U.S. Air Force purchased a standard Beechcraft King Air B90 with a special VIP interior, designated as the VC-6A, to support President Lyndon B. Johnson and his family. The aircraft was faster and more agile than other light transport aircraft and featured full pressurization for comfort at high altitudes. Other special features included all-weather navigation, de-icing equipment and reversible propellers that allowed the aircraft to land on very short runways.
The VC-6A was primarily used to transport President Johnson and his family between Bergstrom AFB, Texas, and the Johnson Ranch near Stonewall, Texas. Owing to these frequent flights, the aircraft became informally known as the “Lady Bird Special,” a play on the childhood nickname “Lady Bird” of First Lady Claudia Johnson.
After leaving presidential service, the VC-6A continued to operate as an executive transport with the 89th Military Airlift Wing until it was retired to the museum in September 1985.
Engines: Two Pratt & Whitney PT6A-20 turboprops of 550 hp each
Maximum speed: 256 mph
Range: 1,400 miles
Ceiling: 32,900 feet
Weight: 9,650 lbs. (loaded)
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