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Qantas turns 100 in its most challenging year yet

Qantas has marked a significant anniversary in one of the most challenging years ever faced by the Flying Kangaroo.

Beginning as a mail service for outback farmers, the country’s premier airline on Monday turned 100 years old and used the significant milestone to thank its past and present staff for connecting Australians to the world.

Qantas has been forced to significantly scale back its planned centenary celebrations due to the coronavirus pandemic but will mark the milestone with a low-level flyover of the Sydney Harbour on Monday evening.

In light of the pandemic which has decimated the aviation industry, Qantas chief executive Alan Joyce said the health crisis reaffirmed the values of the airline in always assisting Australians wherever they are in the world.

Camera IconCaptain William Byrnes has worked for Qantas for 50 of its 100 years. Picxture: Britta Campion / The Australian Credit: News Corp Australia

“Flying to help Australians in trouble is a core part of our identity as the national carrier,” Mr Joyce said.

“This year alone we’ve operated over 100 repatriation flights for the federal government to bring people home from COVID hot spots.”

All crews who have worked on COVID-19 repatriated flights were volunteers.

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