It is the first-ever episode to introduce Sasha Alexander as Caitlin Todd, a Secret Service Agent assigned to the Presidential Protection Detail on Air Force One and who later permanently joins the NCIS team as Vivian Blackadder's replacement while also marking the debut appearances of both Gerald Jackson, the NCIS Medical Examiner Assistant and FBI agent Tobias Fornell.
A Navy Commander collapses and dies after having lunch with the President of the United States while on Air Force. Due to the Commander's death, the aircraft lands in Wichita, Kansas with agents from all the federal agencies in the United States subsequently descending on the crime scene to investigate. Eventually, the main NCIS team take over the investigation and begin pursing other leads but with no solid evidence present, it looks like a simple death by natural causes but things change when the Major who was the regular "ball-carrier" is later found dead in his car with NCIS soon discovering that whoever murdered the Major and the Commander is planning on killing the President by any means necessary...
At a small airport, as numerous civilians and military stand there, President George Walker Bush waves to the crowds gathered before he heads into the main area of Air Force One, the official plane for the President of the United States.
Once he's in, all the stewards get to their feet with the President asking Bobby the Chief Steward if the baby-backs from Papa Joe's made the flight.
Bobby states that he did and that they were flown in from San Antonio ten minutes ago.
The President is thrilled, stating they should have an early lunch with Bobby agreeing.
As they leave, President Bush remarks that he loves the baby-backs with Secret Service agent William Baer agreeing and as they head down to an area of the plane, President Bush is puzzled, stating wasn't Major Kerry to be handling the football on this one?
Secret Service Agent Caitlin Todd then tells President that Major Kerry came down with the flu.
Agent Baer then introduces the President to Kerry's replacement, Commander Ray Trapp who is standing to attention and that Trapp is new on the detail.
When President Bush asks if they've met while shaking Trapp's hand, Trapp states that they have when they were on the Abraham Lincoln.
Bush then goes all dreamy, saying that the trip to the Lincoln was the best day he's had on the job. He then invites Trapp to lunch with him which Trapp agrees to with Trapp also stating that it would be his pleasure.
President Bush then remarks that it's good and that he looks forward to it.
Once the two men have left, heading into the private quarters and as numerous personnel begin sitting down again, Kate approaches Trapp and tells him that it's lunch with the boss on Trapp's first day before telling Trapp he's destined to have those stars on his shoulder before walking off.
Trapp smiles before sitting down, his hand securely resting against the suitcase containing the nuclear football.
Seconds later, Air Force One takes off.
A while later, food is being handed out to the passengers while Bobby the Chief Steward approaches Agents Baer and Todd with Bobby asking them if they would like anything to eat.
Baer tells Bobby no, thank you.
Baer states, "No, thank you".
Kate then tells him that she's fine.
Bobby states very well before moving on.
As Bobby leaves, Baer then gets to his feet and informs Kate that he's going to be in Comm, getting an update from Backhoe with Baer also telling Kate to keep an eye on things down here.
Kate wonders if Baer is expecting problems.
Baer then turns back for a second and grimly tells Kate to expect problems before saying that with a little luck, she'll never lose a President.
With that, Baer turns around again and heads up the stairs.
In her seat, Kate simply smiles.
As Baer heads upstairs, Commander Trapp arrives back in after his lunch with the President but something's not right as almost instantly, he drops the suitcase which falls to the ground with a loud thunk.
This has Kate looking up, concerned.
Trapp then glances at his left hand, obviously stunned.
Realizing that Kate's looking at him, Trapp gathers himself together and laughs it off, stating that he fumbled in his first Army-Navy game but that he recovered the ball.
Trapp then picks up the suitcase and places it against the seat.
Kate just stares at Trapp, still concerned.
Trapp then approaches Kate, holding out his hand and tells her that he's Ray Trapp. Kate shakes Trapp's hand, revealing that her name is Kate Todd.
Trapp remarks that eating with the President was a bigger sweat than making a night trap. He then sits down with Kate wondering if Trapp is ill.
Seconds later, Trapp makes a gagging sound and slumps to the floor.
Kate then springs in action, calling for her boss, "Slammer" and telling that it's from Rosefern. She reveals that they've got a medical emergency in Section One.
The message done, Kate gets up from her chair and kneels down, checking Trapp.
Almost instantly, Baer appears, wondering what's wrong.
Kate grimly replies that she doesn't know.
Suddenly, the medical team arrive with the doctor in charge, Burger wondering what they've got.
As the medics all rush in, Kate steps aside to give them room to work.
One medic reports that Trapp isn't breathing with another stating that Trapp has no pulse.
The female medic orders that she be given the bag.
As Burger gets to his feet and joins Baer, Kate informs Burger that Trapp just had lunch with the President.
Burger is in disbelief, muttering "Oh my God" with Baer telling them to go.
As Burger heads off to check on President Bush, Baer tells Kate to stay with the football before Baer himself rushes off after Burger.
As the medics continue working on Trapp, Kate grabs the suitcase and brings it over to where she's sitting.
The female medic then states "pulse compressions" as another male medic is performing CPR on Trapp. As Kate looks on, the female medic orders a pulse be taken.
Kate stands in the corner, watching.
The female medic then reports that there's no pulse before ordering that they take Trapp's shirt off and she grabs a scissors, preparing to cut.
It then cuts to Kate who's still breathing frantically.
In his basement, NCIS Special Agent Leroy Jethro Gibbs is busy working on a piece of wood with the TV blaring in the background.
Suddenly, the phone rings, distracting Gibbs.
Gibbs then blows some dust off the boat and heads over to the phone, answering the call with his trademark, "Yeah, Gibbs".
In the NCIS Squadroom which is engulfed in light and various people walking around, getting ready for work and in the Bullpen that belongs to the main NCIS Major Case Response Team, the second-in-command and the Senior Agent of the team, fellow NCIS Special Agent Anthony DiNozzo informs Gibbs that a Navy Commander carrying the Football on Air Force One just carked in the air.
In the basement, Gibbs wants to know where they landed.
DiNozzo states that it was Wichita, Kansas and that the President's transferring to the back-up bird. He then reveals that he booked them on a 1500 United flight out of Reagan and that it stops in Dallas before going on to Wichtia.
In the basement, Gibbs wonders if that's the best DiNozzo could do.
Back in the bullpen, as DiNozzo puts on his jacket, he tells Gibbs that it's Saturday and that they had their own jet...
Gibbs states that they don't and that Ducky is buds with coroners across the country. He tells DiNozzo to see if Ducky can't get one of the coroners to hold the body until NCIS get there.
DiNozzo agrees, remarking "All right" before hanging up.
Back in the basement and as Gibbs hangs up, a Reporter (Yankee White) who is Doris McMillon appears on TV.
She announces that she has CBS news report and that they've just learnt that Air Force One has made an unscheduled stop at Wichtia's Mid-Continent Airport.
As this goes on, Gibbs races up the steps.
Once he gets to the top, he hits a button and the light to the basement as well as the TV all switch off but not before the Reporter states that details are sketchy.
At the Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport, it's very busy as numerous civilians and airport personnel as well as flight attenders make preparations for their own flights with one PA stating that attention, passengers and that this is a gate charge announcement and as Gibbs and Tony head up to the check-point, Tony is rambling on and on about how many other agencies (FBI, CIA, DEA, ATF, and even NYPD) have their own private jets while NCIS doesn't.
Gibbs then tells Tony that it's 36 cents a mile before asking Tony if he wants to drive.
Tony remarks that it's humiliating.
Dennis then takes a sheet of paper from DiNozzo with DiNozzo even showing Dennis his NCIS badge.
As Dennis hesitates, Gibbs wonders if Dennis is new at this with Dennis proudly announcing that it's his first week.
Gibbs just smiles.
Dennis is puzzled at NCIS, stating that he's never heard of it.
Gibbs then tells DiNozzo that's embarrassing with DiNozzo nodding in agreement.
Dennis wonders if NCIS is anything like CSI.
Tony then believes that it's only if they're dyslexic.
Dennis then announces that they can go ahead and go around the metal detector but that their bags have to go through the scanner.
Gibbs tells Dennis to wait a minute and while they're allowed to take weapons on board, the airport security have to scan their bags?
Dennis believes that they've got permits for the weapons but for the bags.
Gibbs looks annoyed while Tony remarks that they really need their own jet.
Suddenly, a voice is heard telling Dennis that the bags are his with the speaker being revealed as none other than NCIS Medical Examiner, Dr. Donald Mallard.
With the problem sorted, Dennis wonders why Gibbs and DiNozzo didn't tell him they were schlepping for the Doctor and that Ducky's got a bag permit.
Gibbs and Tony just look at each other.
Ducky then tells them or "the men" to move it.
With that, Ducky announces that they don't want to miss their flight as Gibbs and Tony follow.
A while later, at the airport in Kansas, various police cars surround Air Force One while inside the plane, local County Coroner Elmo Poke states that if J. Edgar Hoover was alive, then Poke would tell them what he'd tell Hoover: the body is in Wichita County and as a county coroner, Poke had jurisdiction and no-one can move it until the ME says they can.
FBI agent Tobias Fornell tells Poke that his jurisdiction doesn't supersede the FBI on Air Force One.
From her seat, Kate remarks that it's not Air Force One and as she gets to her feet, she mentions that when the President departed on the back-up plane, it became Air Force One and that this plane AKA the one they're all on is now Alpha Foxtrot 29000.
Fornell tells Kate not to get into this pissing contest and as she pointed out, the President's gone before stating that it's no longer a Secret Service problem.
Kate believes that it could be a natural death or a botched attempt to murder the President and until she knows which, it's her problem.
Poke states that he doesn't give a damn which one of them boss but they ain't moving this body until the ME says they can.
Ducky then arrives in, wondering if Poke's talking about him with the two men exchanging greetings while Gibbs and Tony accompany Ducky.
Poke wonders if Ducky liked those steaks Poke air-expressed.
As he removes his jacket, Ducky remarks that they were delicious and as Fornell expresses disbelief about Poke air-expressing Ducky steaks to Kate, Ducky throws his jacket to Gibbs who catches it.
Kate remarks that it's a big state and look how long it took him to get here.
Poke reveals that Fornell is FBI and Kate is Secret Service and that they're fighting over this body like two hounds over a T-bone.
Ducky remarks that it's their T-bone for the moment.
Gibbs then pipes up that all these LEOs are contaminating a potential scene with Ducky agreeing with his "assistant" and that everyone who boarded in Wichtia will have to evacuate the plane.
Fornell stands his ground, stating that he's not going anywhere.
Kate remarks that she flew in on it.
Ducky then states that Fornell and Kate can stay but everyone else must deplane.
Poke then tells the group that they heard the ME and orders them to move it.
With that, the large group all leave.
Poke asks Ducky what he thinks with Ducky stating that there's no outward sign of trauma.
Kate replies that Trapp was stricken after having lunch with the President.
Tony wonders about the President with Kate stating that the President is fine and that the President's physician cleared him to fly on to LA- Los Angeles.
Gibbs asks what happened which has both Fornell and Kate looking at him.
Kate explains that when the Commander returned from lunch, he had an equilibrium problem and his grip was too weak to hold his suitcase.
Ducky gets to his feet while wondering did the Commander gradually become ill or was it sudden?
Kate tells Ducky that it was sudden and that the Commander convulsed before collapsing.
As Gibbs writes something down, Kate states that the President's physician believed that the Commander had a stroke.
Tony remarks that the Commander looks too young for a brain fart.
Ducky then tells to Poke that it looks like a natural death and that they can leave with the body as soon as they sign releases.
Fornell wonders why the Hell didn't they say that?
Poke remarks that he couldn't and like he said, it was the ME's decision before stating that the release forms are in his car. As this happens, Ducky puts his jacket back on.
Fornell tells Kate to go and that they can work out jurisdiction with Washington on the flight to Andrews.
With that, Fornell leaves although it's clear Kate has some suspicions about the whole thing.
Poke asks Ducky about the soft-shelled crabs which has Kate stopping for a few seconds before she leaves with Ducky stating that Poke will have them by the weekend.
"10-4, partner", Poke states before he too leaves.
Once they're all gone, Gibbs takes charges and tells Tony to go show the pilot his credentials and to get them the Hell out of here.
Tony heads off but Gibbs stops, pointing out that cockpit is on the top deck.
Tony sheepishly remarks that he knew that.
As Tony heads upstairs, Gibbs wonders if Ducky enjoyed playing his boss.
Ducky admits that he did.
Gibbs then asks Ducky what he thinks happened.
Ducky is in disbelief, stating that he's barely met the deceased.
Gibbs believes that Tony's right and a Naval aviator stroking at his age?
Ducky remarks that Trapp could have been born with an aneurysm and that they're time bombs in the body. He then tells the story of this young promising basso profundo in London and that the man was only 27 when he kneeled over in the middle of an Otello aria.
Seconds later, Kate arrives back in, her hand resting on her holstered gun as she demands to know who the Hell Gibbs and Ducky are.
She points out that Gibbs isn't an ME's assistant and then tells Ducky that there isn't a soft-shell crab within a 1,000 miles.
This has Ducky apologizing.
Their cover blown, Gibbs holds up a badge, revealing that they're NCIS and as he puts the badge aside, Gibbs reveals that they flew down from Washington to take over of the investigation.
Kate is furious, stating that first the FBI tried to muscle in and now NCIS.
Gibbs remarks that this is a dead Naval officer.
"Who died on Air Force One after having lunch with the President it's my job to protect", Kate snaps, heading into the main area of the plane.
Getting to his feet, Gibbs gets to his feet, stating that they can share jurisdiction and that Kate can be on his team.
Kate wonders why NCIS should have the investigation.
Gibbs then gets in Kate's face, wondering if she's ever worked a crime scene.
Kate states that she is a Secret Service agent.
Gibbs simply smiles and turns away, stating that he thought not.
As Gibbs kneels down to examine Commander Trapp's body, Kate tells Gibbs not to dismiss her like that and that she earned her jock-strap.
Gibbs wonders if it ever gives her that empty feeling.
Kate asks what he's talking about with Gibbs referring to her jock-strap.
Kate states that she doesn't and that like some species of frogs, she grows what she needs.
As the two stare at each other, Tony arrives down, stating that the pilot won't take off until the Secret Service chick AKA Kate gives the thumbs-up with Tony stopping as he sees Kate standing there.
Ducky who's sitting down just looks on.
Kate smugly announces that that's made it her team.
Not one to give up, Gibbs remarks that it means that he'll just have to hijack Air Force One and then tells Tony to escort Agent Todd off the aircraft and then close the hatch.
As Gibbs heads upstairs, Kate in disbelief then changes her mind, telling Gibbs to wait.
As she stands at the stairway, Kate agrees to the terms, stating that she doesn't wait to delay them further by having to shoot Gibbs.
After some silence, the two then shake hands.
Outside, Fornell heads up the ramp, telling Kate that they should get this show on the road.
Tony stops Fornell by apologizing and stating that they overbooked the flight.
As Fornell and the FBI agents look on, Tony closes the hatch and then, the plane moves with Fornell ordering for them to stop.
Poke just looks on, grinning.
Fornell arrives back, wondering if Poke knows what the Hell is going on.
Poke remarks that it looks like Ducky decided to take the body to Washington.
Fornell wonders why Poke's medical examiner is taking the body to Washington.
Poke remarks that he never said that Ducky was his medical examiner.
The backlash from the plane has everyone then ducking for cover as Fornell yells who uses Ducky as their Medical Examiner with Poke announcing hat Ducky works for NCIS.
Fornell just looks stunned.
It then cuts to the former Air Force One which then flies off into the night.
The former Air Force One flies through the night sky.
On board the former Air Force One which is flying through the night sky, Gibbs is talking to NCIS Director Thomas Morrow and filling him in on what's happened so far in the investigation with Morrow wondering if Gibbs had to literally slam the door in the FBI's face.
Gibbs tells Morrow that there were more of them (FBI agents) than them (NCIS agents).
Morrow agrees with that point and asks if the Secret Service agent will stand up to the FBI.
Gibbs tells him that he doesn't know but remarks that she's got balls.
Back on the crime scene, Kate wonders if Ducky is starting the autopsy already but Ducky assures he isn't, stating that he's taking a liver temperature to make sure that the time of death is right.
Looking through her PDA, Kate announces that the President's doctor declared the Commander dead at 20:32 Zulu.
While Ducky gets a liver temp, Tony then tells Kate to move aside because he needs measurements for his crime scene sketches.
The two then spend the next few minutes arguing, with Kate calling Tony "pathetic" when he asks her to describe a magazine with a female model on the cover, his point being that the exact measurements are unknowable from just that photo.
Ducky then announces that his time is 19:15 Zulu with Kate saying that he must have gotten the time wrong.
Gibbs comes back down from his talk with Morrow and tells Ducky to log his time of death before stating to Tony that they've gotten enough sketches because Agent Todd's going to give him the floor plans before walking off.
Kate tells them she won't do that, then heads off after Gibbs.
Once they've gone, Ducky tells Tony that the cover analysis was good but asks whether 36 D wouldn't be wishful thinking which has Tony wondering.
Gibbs and Kate begin arguing about the security of the floor plans with Kate casually stating that she thinks she's destined to shoot Gibbs, not DiNozzo.
They then have more arguments in regards to Commander Trapp who replaced Major Kerry who had the flu.
Gibbs continues to explore Air Force One, displaying almost child-like glee at discovering new things on board the plane.
As they leave the press cabin, in which Kate confined the three plane stewards, Gibbs tells Kate two of his important rules which are: 1- Never let suspects stay together, and 2- Always wear gloves at a crime scene.
Once they've arrived back, Ducky tells them he believes he's found why his time of death and that of the President's doctor were so different.
After realizing her mistake, Kate tells Ducky she owns him an apology.
Ducky disagrees and begins rambling on about some story with Gibbs telling him to give it a rest because they've got work to do.
After Gibbs mentions Rule #3- Don't believe what you're told: double check, Kate sarcastically asks him if she should write the rules down in her Palm Pilot or crochet them on pillows.
Once they're inside the President's office, Kate expresses dismay at seeing Tony in the President's chair to which Tony tells Gibbs and Kate that the President isn't using it.
As he and Tony begin logging evidence and signing their names on the bags to maintain the chain of custody, Gibbs offers Kate to try but she simply slaps a hand over her mouth and promptly runs out the door with Gibbs and Tony also giving chase.
Eventually, Kate leans in the bag and promptly throws up before asking Gibbs if she can rinse now that Gibbs has gotten his evidence.
Gibbs assures her that she can and as Kate heads into the bathroom, slamming the door behind her, Gibbs signs his name before handing the bag to Tony, telling him to log it and go find Ducky.
When Tony asks Gibbs if he believes that she's got whatever killed the Commander, Gibbs just looks at him and shakes his head, uncertain.
With Tony running off, Gibbs simply heads over to one of the seats and then starts looking out the window, lost in deep thought as the airplane continues to fly on into the night.
It then cuts to a big function with a man announcing that President George W. Bush is on stage.
While various members of the media who were on Air Force One are busy scribbling down things, Baer is on the phone with FBI Agent Tobias Fornell- (calling him Tom) as the two debate on why NCIS shouldn't handle the investigation and why the FBI deserve to, instead.
Baer eventually relents, agreeing to give the FBI the body and once Fornell has hung up, he remarks that they're back in the ballgame.
Back on Air Force One, Ducky is busy treating Kate who's lying down on a couch, recovering after getting sick. He remarks that it's a stomach virus to which Kate agrees.
When pressed further, she goes on to say that it's the exact same symptoms Major Kerry had.
Ducky's puzzled for a few seconds before eventually figuring out that they slept together.
Kate wonders if Ducky thought she was a virgin.
Ducky tells her that he'd hoped not.
Once Ducky heads off, leaving Gibbs and Kate are alone, they spend the next few minutes, talking to each other before Kate is told that she has a call from Agent Baer.
When Gibbs asks her if he should take the call in her place, Kate then tells Gibbs that she'd have to be dead before mustering up the strength to get to her feet and head to the conference room.
As she heads off, Gibbs smirks in amusement.
It then cuts to the President's room when Tony is busy interviewing Bobby the Chief Steward as part of the investigation and when it's over, Tony thanks Bobby who leaves.
As Bobby leaves, Gibbs arrives in, asking Tony what he's found.
While Gibbs is in the head, Tony tells him what he has so far and when Ducky arrives in, the two spend the next few minutes taking photographs of one another sitting in the President's chair.
Gibbs then comes back and tells them that if they're through taking pictures of each other, then maybe they can move that body aft, leaving DiNozzo and Ducky stunned.
In the conference room, Kate is arguing (albeit unsuccessfully) with her boss, Baer, who's busy making sure everything is ready for the President's departure from the forum.
The two are talking in regards to who should lead the investigation.
Baer tells her to give the body over to the FBI when Air Force One lands at Andrews or else the only Presidential detail she'll be getting will be walking Spotty before hanging up.
Kate hangs up, frustrated.
Once she's arrived back downstairs, having told Gibbs she won't disobey a direct order, she and Gibbs settle into their seats, the pilot having informed them on the intercom that they're beginning to descend into Andrews at this time.
It then cuts to show the plane arriving at Andrews seconds later.
Fornell and another unnamed FBI Agent are busy driving back to the FBI Headquarters, talking about how since they've got Commander Trapp's body, they're going to be leading the investigation.
Unfortunately, they get a shock when a cell-phone begins ringing.
But it's not coming from either of them.
It's actually coming from inside the body-bag where DiNozzo (pretending to be Trapp) is hiding. He answers it and it's Gibbs who tells him that they're in the clear and that Tony can get out of the body-bag now.
With the FBI van having come to a screeching halt, Tony then states that he never thought he'd say this but he's not sure he wants to.
It then cuts to a van, presumably an NCIS vehicle, driving down the motorway.
Gibbs is in the passenger seat, Ducky in the back, scribbling something down on a pad or a PDA, and Ducky's assistant, Gerald Jackson is behind the wheel.
Gibbs tells Tony that he has to go search Commander Trapp's apartment despite Tony protesting that it's 1am.
When Tony's argument is interrupted by his own surprised cry, presumably the FBI agents dragging him out of the body bag, Gibbs hangs up and dryly remarks that he guesses that they found him while Ducky smirks in amusement.
The scene then cuts to MTAC where Morrow is having a conference-call with Mark the Director of the United States Secret Service and Charlie the Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
Morrow announces that since NCIS have Commander Trapp's body, they'll be the ones leading the investigation.
In the NCIS morgue, once Gerald has left to bring Trapp's uniform up to Abby, Gibbs and Ducky go over what's been found so far with Ducky remarking that he won't get anything for hours.
Despite Ducky insisting Gibbs go home and get some sleep, Gibbs instead opts to sleep on one of the vacant autopsy tables with a roll of kitchen paper towels serving as a "pillow".
As Gibbs lies down on the slab, wondering why Abby would go to a "fat party", Ducky tells Gibbs to get some sleep before Ducky switches off the lights and continues examining Trapp's body while Gibbs sleeps.
Meanwhile, Tony arrives back into NCIS, carrying an evidence box of items he has managed to get from Commander Trapp's apartment and walks into the lab where Forensic Scientist Abigail Sciuto is busy studying Trapp's uniform for any trace of poison.
When Tony insists that he'll wait while she's going through the contents, Abby directs him to a futon under her table which Tony gratefully accepts.
As Tony lies down on the futon, using his coat as a pillow and then falls asleep, Abby looks out in amusement and begins working on the items.
The next morning, with Agents Todd and Fornell in attendance along with Gibbs and Tony, Ducky and Abby explain what they've found during their respective all-nighters.
After the presentation ends, Fornell requests that his people check their findings.
Ducky agrees, stating that he and Todd will be getting copies of all their tests.
As Fornell prepares to leave, he asks Tony how his butt is.
Giving Fornell a sarcastic smile, Tony tells Fornell that it's still bouncing along on the beltway.
Fornell departs the bullpen but as Kate prepares to leave, Gibbs calls her back, offering her some gum as a truce which she accepts. He then asks when the President's coming back.
Kate tells him it'll be noon, tomorrow and that she's flying back tonight to rejoin the detail.
Gibbs asks Kate if he can tag along, adding a "Please" for good measure.
Kate tells him but his SIG-Sauer can't because there's a rule on Air Force One that states that only Secret Service agents can carry guns.
Gibbs then agrees, demonstrating by putting his gun into his cabinet and locking it. He then grabs his jacket and leaves but not before telling the others to keep on looking to which Abby nods.
However, once he's gone, she excitedly remarks that Gibbs said please while Ducky simply nods.
In a bar in Georgetown with easy-going music playing in the background, Kate and her boyfriend, Major Timothy Kerry, clink glass, remembering Commander Ray Trapp.
During the talk, Kate breaks up with Kerry, stating that she's more worried about losing a President than losing her job and that she needs to be 100% focused on the task at hand.
The two then talk about Commander Trapp and mourn his passing.
Once she's left, Major Kerry then gets into his car but upon leaving his hat aside, he suddenly suffers a stroke and seizure, dying instantly with drool emerging from his mouth .
It then cuts to Kerry who's sitting there, dead.
After saluting, the President arrives back on Air Force One and meets Trapp's replacement, Major Carl Pritchard before announcing that it's a job well done and that they should begin heading on home, a move Baer agrees with.
However, while the President heads into his room, Kate addresses Baer and tells him she's surprised he didn't object to Gibbs tagging along with them.
Baer then remarks that Gibbs is here because Gibbs's own gut is still churning, isn't it.
Kate remarks that she supposes that they could put it that away.
Baer then tells Kate that his own gut is as well.
Seconds later, Air Force One takes off.
Back at NCIS HQ, Abby tells Ducky that she's tested everything.
Ducky gives her a hint by stating that nature always proves to be a far more elusive and powerful killer than man before he leaves which has Abby wondering.
Back on Air Force One, Kate wonders if Gibbs is expecting Pritchard to drop. She then continues eating her lunch with Gibbs stating that she's over the flu.
Kate corrects him, stating that it's a 24-hour bug and that Tim got over it yesterday before revealing that Tim is Major Kerry.
Gibbs tells her that he knows.
Kate reveals that she met Kerry for a drink and that they had to stop seeing each other,
She also states that when they're working 24/7, how else would they get to know someone?
Gibbs simply tells her church.
As Gibbs leans back in his seat, Kate just looks annoyed.
At NCIS, the test to see if the poison is that of the black puffer comes back negative, leaving Abby discouraged although she gets up from her desk with another series of samples.
On Air Force One, Gibbs wonders where one of the journalists is going.
Kate tells him that the President promised 10 minutes to each member of the Press on board and he's been playing catch-up ever since the incident at Wichita.
Gibbs then mentions about a book by Tom Clancy where three years before 9/11, terrorists hijacked an airliner and crashed it into the Capitol. He then goes on to say that in the Harrison Ford movie, terrorists were reporters.
Kate gets to her feet and tells him that the Secret Service has vetted every single person on board for years, except for Gibbs himself.
Gibbs then mentions that in the film, the terrorists even got their credentials from a Secret Service turncoat and leaves.
As he does, one of the journalists, Leonard Rish emerges from the Press Cabin and asks Kate if the Secret Service is loosening up their dress code.
Kate tells him that Gibbs is not a member of the Secret Service.
Rish wonders if they're all gonna get their fifteen minutes of fame with Kate correcting Rish, stating that it's ten and that the President's doing his best.
Back at NCIS, Abby has tested the Poison Arrow Frog and the results are again negative.
In broad daylight, DiNozzo arrives at a crime scene and introduces himself as NCIS before asking Andy Kochofis of the Metro Police Department what they've got.
Detective Kochofis tells that there's a dead Marine Officer with no signs of robbery because there's still cash and credit cards in the dead man's wallet.
Kochofis tells DiNozzo that he's got two shootings to handle and he hopes NCIS will take the body of the dead Marine.
DiNozzo looks at the card and it shows that the man's name is Timothy Kerry.
Upon realizing the victim is a Major in the United States Marine Corps, DiNozzo grimly replies that they'll take Kerry.
Back at NCIS, Abby's running the poison of the Coastal Taipan through her systems and finally, it's a test that comes up as Positive, confirming that it is the poison that was used to kill Commander Trapp (and, presumably, Major Kerry).
Abby leaps from the seat and spends a few moments hopping up and down joyfully before saying, "Thank you, thank you, thank you".
On Air Force One, Kate's telling Gibbs about the differences between the real Air Force One and the back-up plane when Gibbs gets a notification telling him he has a conference call waiting for him in the Comm Room.
Gibbs then gets up and tells Kate he wants to know every detail no matter small she think it is.
"Please?", Kate asks hopefully.
Gibbs arrives in the Comm Room and gets the news that Major Kerry is dead.
With Ducky and Abby as well as Tony fitting into a single call, Gibbs learns that the poison was venom from a Coastal Taipan, a highly deadly snake found in Australia.
Abby tells Gibbs that the poison zaps the nervous system and also clots the blood which means that the victim convulses and then strokes with Ducky adding in that the poison is almost impossible to detect.
Having gotten this new information and realizing that Al-Jazeera and Bin Laden wouldn't be bragging about icing the President's ball carriers, Gibbs ends the call and heads back downstairs.
Along the way, Gibbs asks Major Pritchard where he got his uniform cleaned.
Pritchard states that it was the base cleaner at Quantico.
Gibbs eventually catches up with Kate and leads her into a toilet so that they can talk in private given that the rest of the rooms on the plane are being used right now.
After giving her the bad news and deciding that Kate's innocent due to the fact that liars can't pale on cue, Gibbs realizes that Al-Qaeda must have planted something on board the plane before it became Air Force One - while the security was less strict.
Kate denies it's a bomb, saying that they would've detonated it by now.
In the Press Cabin, Stan (Rish's cameraman) begins coughing and gagging, revealing that he's been poisoned.
Baer who's escorting Rish back to the Cabin then rushes to the Cabin just as Burger and his medical team come in.
They begin working on Stan and with everyone focused on that, Rish then heads for the Armory before unlocking the doors and removing a MP5A3 and a matching ammo clip which finally reveals that he is the terrorist responsible for killing both Trapp and Perry and whose primary goal is to kill the President.
Back in the Press Cabin, Burger is still performing CPR although it's clear that Stan is already dead given that the CPR is having no effect whatsoever.
In the toilet, Gibbs has figured out that the terrorists copied the movie's plot and that they too vetted a reporter.
Upon seeing the door open, Rish who's been heading for the President's room slips in an alleyway while Kate informs Gibbs that there's a medical emergency in the Press Cabin.
Gibbs dismisses that as nothing more than a diversion and dispatches Kate to cover the President.
Removing her SIG-Sauer from her holster, Kate heads for the President's room while also telling Major Pritchard that no-one gets past him.
As such, realizing the danger, Pritchard stands guard.
Gibbs rushes back down again, unknowingly heading past where Rish is hiding before discovering that the Armory is open and one of the weapons is missing.
Springing into action, Gibbs grabs a SIG-Sauer, jams a round into it and then heads back to the center of the plane just as Rish is attempting to get into the President's room.
As this happens, Pritchard stops Rish just as Gibbs emerges in the nick of time, his borrowed SIG aimed at Rish as Gibbs orders Gibbs to freeze and get his hands in the air.
Rish then states sure and if someone yells for a doctor.
With that, Rish turns around and begins firing his machine gun, each shot managing to miss Gibbs although the hall is left shot up by the bullets.
Gibbs responds by firing two shots at Rish, killing the terrorist just as cries are heard from the main cabin with other Secret Service agents now rushing in, their weapons drawn.
With the threat over, Gibbs silently walks over to Kate who's holstered her own gun and he hands her the SIG before walking away, leaving her blinking in confusion.
A few hours later, Air Force One is once again a crime scene and has been locked down at an unidentified airport.
As they both leave, Baer remarks that both he and Gibbs are going to spend the next week doing paperwork with Gibbs agreeing.
Baer then tells Gibbs that Kate resigned.
When Gibbs asks if Baer, Baer tells Gibbs that he had to because Kate broke the rules.
They both shake hands before Gibbs departs although Gibbs thanks Baer as well.
It then cuts to Kate who is walking through a car-park where Gibbs catches up with her, telling her he heard she quit. She tells Gibbs that happy news gets around fast and that she did resign because it was the right thing to do.
Gibbs agrees and then tells her if she pulls that crap at NCIS, he won't give her a chance to resign.
Kate wonders if that's a job offer.
However, her question goes unanswered as an unknown woman in a silver car arrives and gives Gibbs a lift before the car drives off into the night, leaving Kate behind in the car-park.
In Gibbs's basement, the TV shows the press-conference where it's revealed that Fornell is being interviewed and that the FBI are taking the credit for stopping Rish's rampage.
It then cuts to show Gibbs who's busy doing what he did at the beginning of the episode: working on his boat.
- Secret Service agent/future NCIS Special Agent Kate Todd, FBI agent Tobias Fornell and Medical Examiner Assistant Gerald Jackson are all introduced for the first time.
- "Yankee White" is the first ever episode of NCIS as a stand-alone series. The NCIS team of Leroy Jethro Gibbs, Anthony DiNozzo, Abigail Sciuto and Donald Mallard as well as NCIS Director Thomas Morrow all originally appeared in the JAG Season 8 episodes, Ice Queen (episode) and Meltdown (episode), both of which served as a backdoor pilot for the main NCIS series. In addition to that, "Yankee White" also includes some music that was also originally heard in both "Ice Queen" and "Meltdown".
- The TV in Gibbs's house is playing CBS, but later in the series, they use Zulu News Network, a fictional news network carried over from NCIS's parent series, JAG (series).
- After watching a reporter go in to see the President alone, Gibbs references a Tom Clancy novel in which a terrorist hijacked a plane and crashed it into the Capitol and notes the novel was published before September 11 (the 1994 novel was "Debt of Honor"). Gibbs then points out a movie starring Harrison Ford as the President in which terrorists pose as reporters and hijack Air Force One (the 1997 movie was aptly named "Air Force One"). In the movie, the Secret Service agent who betrayed the President had the last name "Gibbs." The airplane set used as Air Force One in this episode was also used in the Harrison Ford film.
- The coroner states that the body is in Wichita County while the Secret Service and FBI are arguing over jurisdiction, but this is inaccurate since the city of Wichita is located in Sedgwick County in southeast Kansas, which is 250 road miles from Wichita County in western Kansas.
- While Tony's driving to the crime scene where Major Kerry's body is, a camera man can be seen sitting in the passenger seat, presumably filming the scene itself.
- "Yankee White" is a special security investigation considered the nation's most rigorous security background check in which candidates must pass in order to work for the Defense Communications Agency. The criteria include U.S. citizenship, unquestionable loyalty, and an absolute absence of any foreign influence over the individual, his family, or "persons to whom the individual is closely linked."
- Fornell's first name was revealed to be Tom although it was later changed to Tobias in later episodes, presumably so that he wouldn't be confused with Thomas Morrow, the NCIS Director who was played by actor Alan Dale and who also appeared throughout Season 1 and 2, having originally debuted in the two-parter episodes, "Ice Queen" and "Meltdown".
- When Abby remarks "What are you, my priest?" about Tony's "Bless you", he then counters with "Curse you?". This could be a reference to the fact that Michael Weatherly (Tony DiNozzo) played a warlock named Brendan, who wanted to become a priest in the Season 1 episode, "When Bad Warlocks Turn Good" in the TV series "Charmed".
- This episode also marks the first appearance of the Mysterious Red-Head, an unidentified woman often seen with Gibbs during the first three seasons of NCIS.
- This is also the only episode of the entire NCIS series to have a remixed version of the NCIS theme song although it was later presumably dropped in favor of the original version of the NCIS theme song that Numeriklab created. On the Region 2 DVD, the first three audio options: English, Italian and French all have the original remix version while the German version has the original version of the main NCIS theme song.
|Leroy Jethro Gibbs||Mark Harmon||An NCIS Special Agent in charge of the main NCIS Major Case Response Team.|
|Anthony DiNozzo||Michael Weatherly||The Senior Agent of the main NCIS Major Case Response Team and also the second-in-command.|
|Caitlin Todd||Sasha Alexander||A Secret Service Agent assigned to the Presidential Protection Detail on Air Force One. Later resigns at the end of the episode, eventually joining NCIS and as a result, she becomes DiNozzo's partner and also the Junior Agent of the team.|
|Abigail Sciuto||Pauley Perette||A Goth who is also the Chief Forensic Scientist for the NCIS Major Case Response Team.|
|Donald Mallard||David McCallum||NCIS's Chief Medical Examiner.|
|Thomas Morrow||Alan Dale||Director of NCIS.|
|Mysterious Red-Head||Vivienne Bellisario||Unidentified female companion of Leroy Jethro Gibbs.|
|Gerald Jackson||Pancho Demmings||Assistant Medical Examiner for NCIS who helps Ducky with various tasks.|
|Tobias Fornell||Joe Spano||Agent, FBI.|
|William Baer||Gerry Becker||United States Secret Service and head of the Presidental Protection Detail. Codename is "Slammer".|
|Elmo Poke||Gary Grubbs||Local Coroner of Wichita, KS and a friend of Ducky's.|
|Commander Ray Trapp USN||Gerald Downey||Commander, United States Navy (USN) and the Football Carrier for Air Force One.|
|Major Timothy Kerry USMC||Dane Northcutt||Major, United States Marine Corps (USMC).|
|Captain Burger||Michael Adler||President's Physician.|
|Leonard Rish||Robert Bagnell||Reporter and also a terrorist who was given the task of assassinating the President but was later shot dead by Gibbs when he resisted arrest.|
|Major Carl Pritchard USMC||Dwayne Macopson||United States Marine Corps and the new Football Carrier in the aftermath of Ray Trapp's death.|
|Mark the Director of the United States Secret Service||Lawrence Pressman||United States Secret Service.|
|Charlie the Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation||Gregory Itzin||Federal Bureau of Investigation.|
|President George Walker Bush||Steve Bridges||President of the United States.|
|Bowman||Jeremy Overstreet||Federal Agent with an unidentified federal agency.|
|Detective Andy Kochofis||Asante Jones||Homicide Investigator with Metro P.D.|
|Dennis the Security Guard||Michael Maize||TSA Guard assigned to the airport at Wichita, KS.|
|Secret Service Agent 1||Ron Brosh||United States Secret Service. Uncredited role.|
|Secret Service Agent 2||Michael Calder||United States Secret Service. Uncredited role.|
|NCIS Agent 1||Paul Majors||NCIS. Uncredited role.|
|FBI Agent||Gerald McCullouch||Federal Bureau Investigation.|
|Bobby the Chief Steward||Richard Anthony Crenna||Chief Steward Aboard Air Force One.|
|Medic||Jennifer Weston||Dr. Burger's assistant. Uncredited role.|
|Reporter (Yankee White)||Doris E. McMillon||Reporter for CBS.|
|Stan||Scott Fishkind||Rish's Cameraman who accompanied Rish to Wichita. Uncredited role.|