A piece of presidential history is up for bid right here in the valley.
A DC-9 jet once used to carry presidents, vice presidents and heads of state is up for grabs.
There are two of those DC-9s at the Mesa-Phoenix Gateway Airport. One will be heading to a museum in Oregon. Bidding on the other one begins at $50,000 -- and the airplane most recently flew President Bill Clinton.
If you don't look closely, you might miss a piece of history sitting idle on the tarmac.
Matt Nebgen is the manager of Gateway Aviation Services. They take care of the two former presidential planes.
"It's pretty interesting when you can actually say yeah that plane carried the president of the United States or the vice president of the United States," he said.
Nebgen says the two DC-9s have been stored at the airport for about a year and a half.
"Our primary business is putting planes in the air, not really storage.. when you have a visitor like that, you're going to be cooperative," he said.
But now you have a chance to own your very own piece of history. The State Department is auctioning off one of the planes that serviced as part of the president's fleet of jets from 1975 - 2005.
Bids starting at $50,000, but those we talked to at the airport are not so sure they're ready to make the investment.
"For me, no. But for others, I think that's a good deal for a plane," said Kristina Hines.
"You might buy it for $50,000, but what does it cost to fuel it, put a pilot in it and get it here, there and everywhere.. that would be a little bit too much," added Gary Seliski.
Whoever the new owner will be -- will surely enjoy its rich history, but folks at the airport say they'll miss having the planes that have created such a buzz.
"It's always enjoyable to be around unique aircrafts that have interesting histories to them," said Nebgen.
We are told the planes are fully operational. Although the bidding begins at $50,000, it will be interesting to see just how much the plane goes for.
The auction takes place May 15th.
Former Presidential Aircraft Auction
6033 S. Sossaman Rd.
Mesa, AZ 85212
KDFW FOX 4
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