[PHOTO] Southwest Airlines celebrates 50 years


Southwest Airlines Co. celebrates the 50th Anniversary of its first flight. The Nation’s largest domestic carrier also unveiled Freedom One, a Boeing 737-800 emblazoned with a stylized flag of the United States of America.

The specialty planefeatures 50 stars and 13 stripes and becomes a high-flying tribute to 50 years of Southwest Airlines service. It is the first Boeing 737-800 to join the airline’s unique paint schemes. Other special paint schemes on Southwest Boeing 737-700s .

Southwest’s first flights operated on what was known as the Texas Triangle, between Dallas, Houston, and San Antonio. Throughout the next fifty years, Southwest grew to become the nation’s largest domestic airline, carrying up to 1 in the 4 travelers in the United States. Today, Southwest operates one of the world’s largest fleets of Boeing 737s, serves 121 destinations throughout North America, Employs more than 56,000 People, and is consistently ranked among the best airlines and best employers in the world.