6:57 AM PT -- 4/3 -- 300,000 N95 masks are now getting a personal police escort to medical personnel who need them in New York ... in a New England Patriots truck!!!
#HAPPENINGNOW : @RIStatePolice and @MassStatePolice are escorting 300,000 N95 masks to NY for frontline healthcare workers.— Connor Cyrus (@NBC10_Connor) April 3, 2020 @NBC10_Connor
Using a trailer truck w the #Patriots logo, it dropped off about 900,000 masks in Massachusetts and 100,000 in Rhode Island. @NBC10 pic.twitter.com/Fc9YOJmttT
3:34 PM PT -- The Pats' team jet carrying over a MILLION masks for Americans has safely touched down in Boston ... and workers are already swiftly unloading the goods!!
Pretty awesome move from New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft who sent his team jet on a mission to China to bring back 1.2 million N95 masks!
Kraft reportedly negotiated with several bigwigs around the globe to get the masks -- used by health workers fighting the COVID-19 pandemic -- and once the deal was done, he sent the plane to Shenzhen, China to pick 'em up.
Once it touched down Thursday morning, the plane was only allowed to be on the ground for 3 hours while workers in full-body suits loaded up the masks.
The plane was reportedly upgraded to handle the cargo -- and get this, Kraft is said to have initially negotiated for 1.7 million masks, but they could only fit 1.2 million onboard.
Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker thanked Kraft and the Pats -- "No days off. Thanks to some serious teamwork, Massachusetts is set to receive over 1 million N95 masks for our front-line workers."
"Huge thanks to the Krafts and several dedicated partners for making this happen."
Both Kraft and Baker are expected to greet the plane when it arrives at Boston Logan National Airport on Thursday.
After it lands, the MA National Guard is set to bring the masks to a central stockpile in Marlborough.
Our sources say Kraft spent several million dollars on the mask mission -- which includes 300,000 masks he will be sending to NYC "out of respect for Andrew Cuomo’s leadership."
We’re told the 300,000 masks will be delivered to the makeshift hospital at the Jacob Javits Center on Friday morning.
”Kraft issued a statement saying, "It is an honor for our family to be a part of this humanitarian mission."
"We knew that purchasing greatly-needed N95 masks and providing the Patriots plane to expedite their delivery to local hospitals would immediately help protect our courageous healthcare professionals."
"Multiple organizations across the public and private sectors, all of which were in lockstep with Governor Charlie Baker's visionary leadership, worked together to execute this mission with the purpose of helping save lives."
"I truly hope that in doing so, we can in some way inspire others to find creative ways to give more in support of our doctors, nurses and first responders. It's nice to care for those who provide such compassionate care for us."
Originally published -- 4/2 5:48 AM PT