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August 7th, 1989: “T-Day” - Flying Tigers Makes FedEx an International Force

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Flying Tigers / FedEx adA quarter-century ago today, Flying Tigers joined forces with Federal Express to become the world’s largest full-service, all cargo airline. Included in the acquisition were routes to 21 countries, a fleet of Boeing 747 and 727 aircraft, facilities throughout the world and Tiger’s expertise in international airfreight. 

On August 7th, 1989 Bill Logue became a FedEx operations manager at the Boston ramp. Today, he serves as President and Chief Executive Officer of FedEx Freight. Like many who worked on “T-Day”, he remembers that first day well.


25 years, where did the time go?

It seemed like just yesterday we were all preparing for “T- Day”, August 7,  1989. That’s when we all became part of this great company, FedEx. The Flying Tigers acquisition played a very important role in the history of FedEx, as it contributed significantly to the backbone of our very successful and important international network.

We were a small group of employees from a very tight organization, and we continue to have great pride in our heritage. Today, twenty-five years later, we celebrate the positive impact we have had on the great company that we all work for.

The future of FedEx is very bright, all due to our employee’s passion, to deliver the Purple Promise to our customers on every single transaction!

Well done and Happy 25th to all!

Comments (31) 


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Time sure flies! As a new Flying Tiger employee, I was excited with the news of the merger but a little apprehensive about my new role with Federal Express. I had just been through another large merger between Western and Delta Airlines. The transition went very well and every Federal Express manager and employee welcomed me with open arms and made sure that I had everything I needed. From that moment on, and to this day, I am proud to be a FedEx employee.

And they gave is KIAC! One of the most stable systems ever, albeit greenscreen technology. A lot of the old cargo people still miss this incredible system, which is actually still alive, albeit only in the background. Tough to replace it! FT gave us our 023 airline code among many other wonderful technologies and the best people. Go LAX team! Although I've ONLY been at FedEx for almost 19 years, I deal a lot with the FT team when it comes to cargo... and I was in freight forwarding and dealt with FT at LAX many many moons ago!

I was fortunate enough to be one of the Mechanics that helped transition the South America loop from the 747 to the DC-10. Spent a month in Brasil, first at Rio, then Manus. That was also the turning point in a relationship. After the difficult communication issues, I decided to marry the sweet gal I had been dating for 4 months. Even had the rings made in Rio! Yep, Sweet Memories...and yes, we are still happily married!

I've often said the 2 best things that FedEx received in the merger were the international routes and Bill Logue. Thanks for your leadership across the enterprise.

Flying Tigers/Federal Express............perfect marriage of forces to exceed the competition, espacially in Asia as we all are aware....are "some competitors" still trucking to points East where we fly in directly?...Competition = Capitalism...= America....cant wait tor 2016. hope its not too late....Go FedEx....the BEST in the business...

Greetings, Twenty-Five years ago Federal Express and Flying Tigers snapped a huge bite into the World of Global Cargo Transportation and is the leading Innovator of International Commerce by leaps and bounds ever since then! This company has driven the information age while manifesting itself rich in Aviation History and service to the world-at-large. That is well beyond accolade and accomplishment! Bravo Zulu FedEx! The LAX Proud Bird Luncheon with my group was awesome and is greatly appreciated. The place is so rich in history and is highly recommend for a visit to all who come to or travel through Los Angeles International Airport. Regards, Will

Great memories of working for Flying Tigers in Rio de Janeiro (GIG), sharing positions with Campinas VCP. So many friends along the way!

This is a proud accomplishment! Out in L.A., we celebrated T-Day by going to lunch at the Proud Bird with those who started at the Flying Tigers along with those who are "new". While I never worked for Flying Tigers,I am the manager of the old Flying Tiger's KIAC Development team (now working on it's replacement) which is still based out in L.A. We had a great lunch, and looked through photos of the Flying Tiger 25th anniversary "year book". There's still a lot of pride for the Flying Tigers! I wish we could post some photos we took in front of the Tigers Memorial at the Proud Bird!

Bill, I am proud to say that I was part of the team in Boston that welcomed you and all of the Flying Tiger employees on that day. You were then and still today a great leader. The vision of FWS was at its finest bringing the Tiger team on board the FedEx Express. The dedication and knowledge of all on the "North Side" was extraordinary and beneficial to me and FedEx. Congratulations to all as we continue to move forward and deliver the "Purple Promise".

Thank you. We had cake and ice cream. To salute those left to making Mr. Smith's investment payoff. Incorporating the Worlds most productive Airline Airfreight employees into the Federal Express delivery system in 1989. Carried great rewards in meeting and succeeding the goals set at the merger!

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