While 9/11 ripped so many loved ones apart, it brought Houston couple Nick and Diane Marson together in the strangest way.
The pair were flying separately on a U.S.-bound international flight on Sept. 11, 2001, when their plane was diverted to New Foundland, Canada, following the attacks and after U.S. airspace had closed, according to FOX 26 Houston.
“I noticed the flight attendant was extremely nervous and almost visibly shaking and I thought she’s really not cut out for this job,” Nick, 73, told the station. “Little did I realize she was probably walking around the plane looking for other people that might have been terrorists.”
Theirs and nearly 40 other flights were diverted to New Foundland where they stayed for several days, along with thousands of others, waiting for news and a chance to go home.
“They just opened their pantries, their refrigerators, and made food for almost 7,000 people,” Diane, 80, who has now been married to her husband for 19 years, said of the welcoming Canadians.
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“Basically the New Foundlanders displayed the very best of mankind,” Nick added.
Nick said he first laid eyes on his future bride while they were in line for army blankets.
“I wanted a picture of this lady because these days that we’d spent in this little part of heaven taken care of by angels I wanted to remember it. I wanted to remember Diane,” he told the station.
Diane said she tried to move out of his shot, thinking he wanted a photo of the scenery.
“I wasn’t interested in the scenery at all. I wanted a picture of her,” he answered.
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The couple flew to Washington, D.C., on Friday, nearly 20 years since the attacks, to attend “Come From Away,” the Broadway musical that chronicles New Foundland’s remarkable role in the aftermath of 9/11.
“I don’t want people to forget what happened,” Diane told the station. “I want it to bring us together rather than divide us.”