Detroit Pistons To Donate Second Generation Roundball One (DC-9) Aircraft To Northand Community & Technical College Foundation

February 8, 2012

AUBURN HILLS, Mich. – The Detroit Pistons announced today the donation of their second generation Roundball One DC-9 aircraft to the Northland Community & Technical College Foundation to support Northland Community & Technical College’s (Northland) aerospace programs. Northland’s aviation campus is located in Thief River Falls, MN.

The DC-9 aircraft served as the Pistons’ team plane from 1998-2010. The club’s latest generation of Roundball One, a MD-20 aircraft, debuted during the 2010-11 season.

“We are pleased to donate this aircraft to the aviation program at Northland Community & Technical College knowing that it will benefit a tremendous program and provide students the opportunity for future careers in the aviation field,” said Dennis Mannion, President of Palace Sports & Entertainment and the Pistons.

The Roundball DC-9 serviced Pistons’ teams that made six consecutive trips to the Eastern Conference Finals (2002-2008) and two NBA Finals appearances (2004, 2005), including the 2004 NBA Championship. Other notable flights included two “Flight of Champions” missions where the Pistons delivered relief items to survivors and relief workers affected by Hurricane Mitch in Central America in 1998 and Hurricane Katrina in the gulf coast in 2005.

“We are honored and thankful to the Detroit Pistons for making such a generous donation” said Dr. Anne Temte, Northland Community & Technical College president.” She shared, “This aircraft donation will allow our students to have the important hands-on experience that is vital to professional success in the workforce.”

Northland Community & Technical College, home of Northland Aerospace, is one of the nation’s premiere aviation maintenance training schools. Northland Aerospace features the aviation maintenance technology (AMT) and the unmanned aerial systems (UAS) maintenance training programs. The AMT program is a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) part 147 approved program. The UAS maintenance training program is the first of its kind in the nation. Northland’s campus features 86,000 square feet of training area with cutting edge equipment.

The Roundball DC-9 aircraft will make its last voyage from Detroit Metro Airport on Friday, February 10 at 9:00 a.m. Media interview and photo opportunities will be available from 8:30 – 9:00 a.m. Please contact Kevin Grigg in the Pistons public relations department at 248-377-8762 to schedule any interview or photo requests.

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