STRATFORD, Conn. -- Ahead of Germany’s planned purchase of up to 70 heavy-lift helicopters, Connecticut's U.S. Sens. Chris Murphy and Richard Blumenthal, both Democrats, sent a letter to German Defense Minister Ursula von der Leyen urging the country to replace their existing fleet with the new, Sikorsky-made CH-53K King Stallion aircraft.
Murphy and Blumenthal emphasized that maintaining interoperability between German and American equipment is critical for the two nations’ shared military and humanitarian interests, and that Stratford-based Sikorsky helicopters, which are used by all five branches of the U.S. armed forces, are among the most reliable, low maintenance, and survivable aircraft in the world.
The senators also highlighted that Sikorsky and its workforce are leaders in the design, manufacture, and service of helicopters.
“We understand that by the end of this year you will announce a plan to replace your existing CH-53G heavy-lift helicopters with new helicopters, and we would urge your consideration of the new CH-53K King Stallion aircraft. We strongly believe that maintaining interoperability between German and American equipment is essential, as Germany is one of our most important allies,” wrote the senators. “Flying a range of missions, including carrying cargo, vehicles, artillery and troops, the CH-53 is designed to operate on land or at sea, and to support the U.S. Marine Corps and the armed forces of our allies for decades to come. We are confident that the CH-53K is perfectly suited to meet Germany’s air mobility needs and we look forward to further strengthening the relationship between our two countries.”