Engine trouble forced the Boeing 777, El Al flight 5 on its way from Tel Aviv to Los Angeles to make an emergency stop in Billings Montana morning.
The 300 passengers were stranded for hours, awaiting a new plane, flying in from New Jersey.
Word traveled fast among the 1300 member Jewish community of Montana, and they mobilized to help
Hillel Fuld of Beit Shemesh, Israel, says that somehow, Rabbi Chaim and Chavie Bruk—co-directors of Chabad-Lubavitch of Montana in Bozeman—got news of the situation and set about immediately to offer assistance. With her three young children in tow, Chavie Bruk drove a car full of kosher food 150 miles to Billings Logan International Airport, where passengers had been waiting for nearly 10 hours.
“She showed up and instantly put a smile on hundreds of faces. She did it with utter grace and never stopped smiling for a second,” says Fuld, 37, who works in technology. “Based on the constant smile on her face, she is happier to be here than we are to have her here. It was a tremendous kiddush Hashem—amazing and inspiring!”
Fuld, who is traveling with his wife and 11-year-old son to Los Angeles, enjoyed kosher bagels, cold cuts, chips and cake. Heaps of hummus, fresh fruit and other goods were also available.The well fed passengers finally made it to Los Angeles by 4:45.
Kol yisrael arevim zeh bazeh. All of Israel is responsible for one another.
Thank you, Billings for the hamish welcome.