One of the world's largest airplanes landed at the Salt Lake International Airport May 27 to pick up relief equipment and supplies for Armenian earthquake victims.
Elder Boyd K. Packer, Elder David B. Haight, Elder James E. Faust and Elder Russell M. Nelson of the Council of the Twelve and Elder John K. Carmack of the Seventy accepted invitations to tour the plane.Elder Packer was a bomber pilot in the Pacific Theater during World War II. The other visiting General Authorities also served in the military during World War II or the Korean War.
Since the earthquake in 1988, the Church has had an interest in Armenian relief efforts. The earthquake took more than 50,000 lives.
The Soviet Antonov-124, a four-engine military transport plane, flew in from Newfoundland to pick up equipment for the Armenian relief project led by Jon M. Huntsman, a Utah industrialist and philanthropist and president of the Salt Lake Monument Park Stake.
Relief equipment, supplies and other materials, donated by Utah businesses, were loaded on the plane.
The cargo included such items as donated medical equipment and supplies, and friendship boxes put together by elementary school students from Sandy, Utah.
The plane weighs 420 tons with a maximum load and can carry a cargo of 120 tons. It takes 100 tons of fuel to stay aloft for a maximum of eight to nine hours.
The plane will now travel to Milwaukee, Wis., where precast concrete equipment will be loaded. The equipment, purchased by Pres. Huntsman, will be used in a plant in Yerevan, Armenia. The plant will make concrete portions for housing, to be constructed for those left homeless by the earthquake.