Aviation News

November 10, 2014

Photos: JetBlue Honors Our Veterans With a Stunning New Special Livery

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Written by: Ben Granucci
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Throughout its nearly fifteen year history, New York-based JetBlue Airways has embraced a wide variety of looks for its fleet of aircraft. At the core of this ever-changing look has been the airline’s tailfin designs. JetBlue launched in 2000 with 3 different designs: Stripes, Harlequin, and Dots. In the years since a variety of others have also been introduced. Some, such as the Building Blocks design, have been painted on just one aircraft. Others such as Barcode and Blueberries have not only been applied to many aircraft, they have also become an essential part of the airline’s branding. And the airline keeps adding new designs, including Prism in 2013 for the Airbus A321 fleet, and more recently Tartan in September of 2014, replacing the classic Plaid tailfin that was introduced in 2003.

However, the airline’s varying look is about more than its wide variety of tailfins. For a select few aircraft, there have also been special designs applied to the fuselage. Initially, these designs were applied in addition to the normal JetBlue livery and using one of the many stock tailfins. These designs included tributes to the airlines T5 terminal at JFK and to the DirecTV programming onboard the aircraft, as well as the RealSalt Lake soccer team. Each of these designs has now been retired

In 2010, JetBlue introduced its first aircraft where the special design went beyond the tailfin. In February, the airline introduced the 10th Anniversary color scheme. A tail motif of ‘10’s extended onto the rear fuselage in a way similar to Southwest Airlines or American Airlines new liveries do. While it was more than just a tailfin, it still was not a full on special livery.

In October of that same year, JetBlue unveiled the first aircraft that was fully painted in a special livery. Themed for the New York Jets football team, which the airline is an official sponsor of, JetBlue took their original livery, Stripes, and changed the colors from shades of blue to shades of green. They also added large, billboard-style ‘NY Jets’ titles on either side of the fuselage. A few months later, in February 2011, the ‘I Love NY’ livery was introduced. This design features a special hybrid I Love New York and JetBlue logo on the tail and empennage, as well as the engines, along with a modified fuselage paint scheme. The aircraft was also renamed to “I Love Blue York.” More special liveries have since followed, some of which are rather striking.

February 2012 saw the introduction of N605JB, JetBlue’s Boston Red Sox livery aircraft. This marked the first time that the entire livery had been made over to create a special. Cheered in Boston and reviled in New York, the aircraft ditched the white fuselage base coat for grey and adorned the tail with a large Red Sox Logo. The aircraft’s name (formerly Blue Yorker) was replaced with a logo honoring Fenway Park’s 100th year.

In October 2013, JetBlue unveiled a bold new special livery that has quickly become a favorite among plane spotters and firefighters alike. Dedicated to the firefighters of New York City, Blue Bravest (N615JB) combined a fire engine red base coat with a giant FDNY seal on the tail. The livery marks the airline’s partnership with the FDNY Foundation. The aircraft has since become known as “the cleanest airplane in JetBlue’s fleet” as a result of the numerous water cannon salutes it has been given by ARFF crews across the airline’s route network.

This year, JetBlue has already introduced one special livery to the fleet. N705JB was rechristened as Connected to Blue, in recognition of the airline’s Fly-Fi wireless onboard internet. The aircraft pays tribute to JetBlue’s partnership with Exede to bring high speed, satellite based internet to the aircraft fleet.

This morning, JetBlue introduced their latest special livery. Introduced the day before Veteran’s Day, 2014, the aircraft honors the many veterans of the United States military The aircraft, bearing registration N775JB, received a striking new livery along with a new name, “Vets in Blue.” The familiar white JetBlue fuselage has been replaced with a deep blue. The tail has been adorned with a large yellow ribbon, and the wingtip fences have been painted yellow as well. Beneath the rear 8 rows of windows are the words “JetBlue Honors Our Veterans” in yellow. Above those windows, next to the aircraft’s registration, is large American flag. This flag is approximately four times the size of the flag that normally accompanies a JetBlue aircraft’s registration.

The aircraft’s name is shared with JetBlue’s Vets In Blue program. That program mentors veterans who have recently separated from the Armed Forces. It seeks to ease these soldier’s transition into life working in the private sector. Jet Blue is also participating in the 100,000 Jobs Mission. They are one of 170 companies that have committed to hiring at least 100,000 veterans over 10 years.

This aircraft is the latest in a series of moves by JetBlue to honor and support both active duty soldiers and veterans of the US Military. Most recently, the airline and the USO marked the opening of the first USO Center in a New York-area airport.

This special livery is the latest of several that have been adorned with the famous yellow ribbon. American Airlines has a 737-800 and a 757-200 (and formerly a 767-200) that honor the soldiers and veterans of the United States Armed Forces. These aircraft add a large yellow ribbon to the classic ‘Silver Bird’ livery. Just forward of the tail are special titles identifying the aircraft as the “Spirit of Liberty” (737-800), “Spirit of Freedom” (757-200), or “Spirit of Independence” (767-200).

We will be onboard the first passenger carrying flight of this aircraft bearing this new livery this morning. Be sure to check out our coverage of a very special flight to Washington D.C. tomorrow.

Ben Granucci, Standards Editor, is an aviation enthusiast and plane spotter based in New York City. Growing up in Connecticut, he has had his eyes toward the sky for as long as he can remember. He can be reached on Twitter at @BLGranucci or through his blog at Landing-Lights.com.

About the Author

Ben Granucci
Ben Granucci, Senior Editor, is an aviation enthusiast and plane spotter based in New York City. Growing up in Connecticut, he has had his eyes toward the sky for as long as he can remember. He can be reached at [email protected]. Follow him on Twitter.



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