Yesterday, United airlines diverted flight 85 from Tel Aviv to Cleveland due to bad weather in Newark, NJ.
Dan reports at the time United said that the flight would only be in Cleveland until 7:34pm and that passengers would remain on the airplane.
At 8:20pm United updated the new departure time from Cleveland to Newark to 12:45am and word came out that the passengers would deboard the plane.
Dan tweeted out asking if any DansDeals readers were on the flight and several people from the flight responded. Some were hungry. Some weren’t able to get in contact with relatives on the plane. Some just wanted to get home already.
So Dan posted on a Cleveland Jewish Facebook group to see if anyone was able to coordinate a response and some people reached to the Cleveland Police Department asking to see how they could get food to the passengers. However, the police department said that nobody was in distress, so it would not be possible to bring food past security.
He writes ‘I figured that he would have better luck at the airport than trying to arrange for permission away from the airport, so I sprung into action. (The same advice applies when your flight is delayed or canceled, it’s typically easier to fix things and get moved onto another carrier at the airport rather than over the phone.)’
He then ‘called the local kosher pizza shops to try to order a bunch of pies to bring to the airport, but this was Cleveland and they had already closed for the night.’
Dan writes ‘My wife Mimi suggested that I run to Trader Joe’s, so I hopped in the car and made it there as they were closing their doors at 9pm to pick up several cases of Pas Yisroel french rolls and chocolate babkas. My fellow Chabad of Beachwood council member Dr. Shmulie Margolin called Ohio Kosher and arranged for Cholov Yisroelsliced cheese, cookies, and other snacks. I picked up Shmulie, we scrubbed our council meeting, and drove to the airport.
I called United Global Services for help getting through TSA, but nobody in the Cleveland airport answered the phone, so they said to just ask at the airport for a gate pass.’
Dan tried tweeting United, argued with TSA agents and almost gave up… But, was able to help.
‘Thankfully we got them some food in the nick of time, kudos to the TSA for helping us get the food through to the passengers and to Dr. Shmulie Margolin and Ohio Kosher for helping with the food.’ writes Dan.
‘I feel privileged to have a network where I was able to instantly connect with the affected passengers and am happy that I was able to make their travel slightly less painful’ added Dan.
A true role-model in using his massive platform to help fellow Yidden!