The Day the World Came to Town: 9/11 in Gander, Newfoundland

The Day the World Came to Town: 9/11 in Gander, Newfoundland

by Jim DeFede (Author)

The True Story Behind the Events on 9/11 that Inspired Broadway’s Smash Hit Musical Come from Away, Featuring All New Material from the Author

When 38 jetliners bound for the United States were forced to land at Gander International Airport in Canada by the closing of U.S. airspace on September 11, the population of this small town on Newfoundland Island swelled from 10,300 to nearly 17,000. The citizens of Gander met the stranded passengers with an overwhelming display of friendship and goodwill.

As the passengers stepped from the airplanes, exhausted, hungry and distraught after being held on board for nearly 24 hours while security checked all of the baggage, they were greeted with a feast prepared by the townspeople. Local bus drivers who had been on strike came off the picket lines to transport the passengers to the various shelters set up in local schools and churches. Linens and toiletries were bought and donated. A middle school provided showers, as well as access to computers, email, and televisions, allowing the passengers to stay in touch with family and follow the news.

Over the course of those four days, many of the passengers developed friendships with Gander residents that they expect to last a lifetime. As a show of thanks, scholarship funds for the children of Gander have been formed and donations have been made to provide new computers for the schools. This book recounts the inspiring story of the residents of Gander, Canada, whose acts of kindness have touched the lives of thousands of people and been an example of humanity and goodwill.

The Day the World Came to Town: 9/11 in Gander, Newfoundland by Jim Defede is a powerful and moving account of the events that unfolded in the small town of Gander, Newfoundland, in the aftermath of the 9/11 terrorist attacks. On that fateful day, 38 planes carrying nearly 7,000 passengers were diverted to Gander after U.S. airspace was closed. The town's residents opened their homes and hearts to the stranded travelers, providing them with food, shelter, and comfort during a time of great uncertainty and fear.

Defede's book tells the stories of the people of Gander and the passengers who were stranded there. He chronicles the challenges they faced, the bonds they formed, and the lasting impact that the events of 9/11 had on their lives. The Day the World Came to Town is a testament to the power of human kindness and compassion in the face of tragedy.

In the wake of the attacks, the people of Gander displayed an incredible amount of resilience and generosity. They welcomed the strangers into their homes, providing them with food, clothing, and a place to sleep. They also went out of their way to make sure that the passengers were comfortable and well-cared for. This outpouring of support helped to ease the pain and suffering of those who had been affected by the attacks.

The Day the World Came to Town is a story of hope and healing. It shows how the people of Gander came together to help those in need, and how the passengers who were stranded there found comfort and support in the midst of a tragedy. The book is a reminder of the power of human kindness and the importance of helping others in times of need.


244 pages