And now for something completely different. Good news for a change! Yea.

On 11 September 2001, the biggest maritime evacuation in history occurred off the south coast of Manhatten. In nine hours, over 500,000 people were shipped to safety.

And it was all the fruit of spontaneous acts of generosity and ad hoc leadership.

This is a ten minute video, but if you’ve got the time (and the bandwidth) it’s worth the investment:

  • MuMu of St Kilda

    I’d never heard of this story until now. Thank you for posting it, Fr John. It shows the human heart is made for heroism – we’ll step up to the plate if the call is high and hard enough and if others join us. All of these skippers and crew knew they could be heading into a violent death, but they repeatedly took action to take people off Manhattan.

  • Anne

    Thanks Fr John, I wept a s I watched and remembered. My family was watching TV the night it happened. We stayed up all night. We heard commentator saying “America is being attacked” we watched in horror. And I remember reading about a Catholic Chaplin going in knowing he may not come outI think his name was Fr Shepherd and I remember the “Shepherd going back for those left behind” and remember seeing his body being rbought out on a stretcher. He went in after them and he led them out . 9all perished) but a true shepherd.

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