Welcome to UA929.org
97947 visits - and counting!
Main Menu
> Home Page
   > Contacting United
   > Caption Competition
   > Bob's Story
   > Tom's Story
   > Steve's Story
   > The Gambo Anthem
> Read Articles
> Web Links
> Gallery
> User Information
> Site Map

Resurrection & Facebook

IMPORTANT NOTICE - Now on Facebook

The website is (for various technical reasons) frozen in time. All new discussion and photos etc will be on our UA929.org Facebook page. Why not join us there?

Quick Picks
> What do I do now?!
> Today's comments
> Top 5 stats

Having trouble logging in? Don't want to remain anonymous? Make sure your computer is accepting 'cookies'. Find out more...

Pictures? Problems?

If you have any pictures of recent reunions, or if you get stuck, or are unsure about anything, just send an email to web@ua929.org, and one of our happy band of administrators will be happy to help.

Salem residents recall being stranded from home
Posted on Wednesday 26 September @ 10:18:50
In the PressThank you to Fred Allen - who sent posted this link. It is reproduced here from The Statesman Journal, Salem without permission.
Salem resident Fred Allen was flying back from a two-week missionary trip to Kenya when terrorists struck the East Coast.
Midway across the Atlantic, the pilot told passengers on United Airlines Flight 929 that there had been “an incident” in the United States and the plane was being diverted from Chicago to the city of Gander — population 10,000 — in the Canadian province of Newfoundland.

Allen did not know it then, but he was to spend the next five days there, along with as many as 8,000 people on nearly 40 other diverted flights.

Gander apparently was chosen because it’s one of the closest Canadian provinces to the United States’ East Coast and because its airport, a busy World War II stop-over and refueling center, is better equipped than most to handle the sudden traffic.

Allen said that those five days turned into one of the most profound experiences of his life.

“I’ve done a lot of traveling and as a missionary, I’ve seen a lot of hearts open. But I’ve never, ever experienced such a phenomenal display of generosity and organization in my life,” he said.

He is founder and president of a Christian missionary organization called Burning Bush Ministries.

The passengers spent the first night on the airplane, as local authorities and volunteer agencies scrambled to meet the logistical challenge of so many people descending with such short notice on the community.

The next day, more than 200 people from Allen’s flight were bused — with only their carry-on bags — to a Salvation Army church in the even smaller town of Gambo, home to pristine ocean inlets, streams and woods with virtually no tourism.

Allen struggled for words to express what took place there. As people watched coverage of the attacks and their aftermath on a TV, they started pulling together, offering their different skills to make things go smoother.

A Dutchman with a flair for communication appointed himself liaison between airline authorities and the passengers. A singer-songwriter from England put on concerts. A nurse got prescription medications to those who needed them.

Many became fast friends, Allen said.

“Even in the midst of the tragedy, there was a real sense of camaraderie,” Allen said. “There was real joy going on.”

The kindness of Salvation Army volunteers also was astonishing, Allen said. They let some passengers stay in their homes, provided food, bedding, showers, toiletries, laundry service, a change of clothes — even a choir performance.

The high spirits continued after the group finally left for Chicago. The passengers cheered on takeoff and landing. Applauding airline staff lined the taxiway at the airport in Chicago and the passageway to the terminal.

Some passengers shed tears upon leaving each other. A pair of Webmasters in the group set up a Web site to keep in touch.

“What happened in five days is an entire community, a microcosm, was given birth,” said Allen, who arrived safely in Portland last Sunday. “That’s true on a large scale as well. The country has come together.”

Laurence M. Cruz

Comments are disabled. Please go back to the previous page.

"Salem residents recall being stranded from home" | Login/Create Account | 0 comments
The comments are owned by the poster. We aren't responsible for its content.

Layout & Design Copyright © Prolateral Consulting 2001-2018
Content Copyright © The UA929.org Community 2001-2018