HISTORY

unexpected visitors, the: 9/11 silver linings

This film shows a different side of 9/11 and is about people’s capacity for good. It tells the story of Gander, a small town in Newfoundland, that became synonymous with empathy, altruism, respect and tolerance.

programme information

Duration

1 x 60'

Production Company

A co-production of Terra Mater Factual Studios and Interspot Film

YOP

2011

Definitions

HD

Episode Information

Everybody remembers where they were on the 11th of September 2001. The world was in a state of shock. Almost 3,000 people lost their lives. 9/11 will forever remain a symbol of evil. This film shows a different side of 9/11 and is about people’s capacity for good. It tells the story of Gander, a small town in Newfoundland, that became synonymous with empathy, altruism, respect and tolerance. After the attacks of the 11th of September, the U.S.A. closed the airspace over America. More than 5,000 landings were cancelled. 255 machines on their way to New York were re-routed to Canada – 38 directly to Gander. This small town with a population of 9,500 was asked to take in 6,140 unexpected visitors. And they did, for five days, with hospitality, self-sacrifice and compassion. They set up camp beds in schools and clubhouses, and took strangers into their own homes. Housewives cooked around the clock. Among those stranded were people of all nations, ages, religions and social classes. In the hours of fear and uncertainty, people became good friends. Some of these friendships remain to this day. One couple even married. In ‘The Unexpected Visitors’ they all look back on these days and a heartwarming tale of stranded passengers and helpful hosts begins...

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