airbus lakota

Airbus Helicopters Inc. delivered the 423rd Lakota helicopter built at company’s production facility in Columbus to the U.S. Army on Friday. The celebration held at the facility in Lowndes County marked the delivery of the first the UH-72A Lakota light utility helicopter produced as part of a new contract with the Army that calls for a total of 51 aircraft to be assembled in Mississippi.

The Airbus Lakota aircraft is also used by the U.S. Navy and the Royal Thai Army. The Columbus plant has about 200 employees, and approximately 40 percent are U.S. military veterans.

Chris Emerson, President of Airbus Helicopters Inc. and head of the North America region, said the delivery of the aircraft was a key moment for the company. He thanked Mississippi’s congressional delegation for continuing to support the company and looked forward to continuing the long-standing relationships.

U.S. Senators Roger Wicker and Cindy Hyde-Smith of attended the event in Columbus, along with Gov. Phil Bryant. During the program, Bryant praised the work of the men and women of Airbus who build the helicopters.