When the World Came to Town:  9/11 in Gander Newfoundland by Jim Defede

world came to townSometimes when you least expect it there’s a story that takes you by surprise and captivates you. This book, When the World Came to Town:  9/11 in Gander Newfoundland by Jim Defede did that for me. This story detailed the events that happened in Gander, Newfoundland after the World Trade Center bombing in NYC on 9/11.  Do you remember that the airspace in the US was shut down after that happened?  Many of the planes turned back, others that were very close to the US were diverted to Canada. Others not yet over the ocean were rerouted to Gander.

This story is about the citizens of Gander (population 10,000) and nearby communities and how they stepped up to welcome 38 planes carrying over 6000 people.

Imagine a town of 10,000 finding food, housing, medicine, clothes (suitcases were left onboard the planes) and transportation for over 6000 people? Not only was this effort accomplished, it was done with kindness, friendship and caring.

The book took us away from the smoke and flames and horror of NYC and showed us genuine compassion by strangers in a strange land. Hope was offered in the form of warm meals, hot showers, new underclothes. Friendships were made. Faith in humanity was restored.

Need a reminder about pure goodness? Read this book.

Nice 5 minute story by Tom Brokaw

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15 thoughts on “When the World Came to Town:  9/11 in Gander Newfoundland by Jim Defede

    • Hi Marilyn,
      Thanks for reblogging my post. The story is wonderful and most amazing of all was how the community went above and beyond and truly opened their arms to 6000+ total strangers. It was heartfelt.

  1. Thank you so much Marge Katherine for sharing this story and the reminder that there are GOOD people in this world. I must get the book so I can read it whenever I doubt.
    Love and blessings to you and all our blogger friends.

    • Hi Ann,
      Thanks for reblogging my post. It’s a pretty powerful book that takes you back to a painful time. The story reminds us of the others who were caught ‘in-between’ the crisis and how a community stepped up with arms opened wide. It’s sweet.
      xo — Marge

  2. Thanks to you, I did read this book. And it was one of the most uplifting and emotionally filled books I’ve ever read! How a wee community could pull together so quickly and show the rest of the world what true generosity and kindness really is, in the depths of such destruction and terror, was amazing! How wonderful our world would be if everyone treated each other like the people of Gander did. A clear role model for the rest of the world…

    • Hi Sue Ellen, Thanks for writing.
      Gander and surrounding communities showed the world the right way to behave. They stood with open arms and offered peace when there was so much confusion. Truly amazing!

  3. I can’t remember when, but a while ago, either 20/20 or 60 minutes did a story on this town; interviewed several people, etc. Very interesting. I think I’d like the book – thanks!

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