El Al Flight Turns Back for 11-Year-Old Cancer Kid


elalA New York-bound El Al flight returned to the terminal gate after its official departure to collect an 11-year-old girl who had been removed from the airplane after she mislaid her passport.

On Wednesday, August 7, Inbar Chomsky of Rechovot was headed to Camp Simcha – Chai Lifeline’s summer camp program for pediatric cancer patients – along with a group of 40 people. After boarding the plane and undergoing extensive medical examinations, Inbar discovered that her passport was missing. When a camp staff member notified the flight crew, a frantic search ensued for over half an hour as the flight attendants, ground control, and fellow passengers examined every inch of the aircraft and gate for the passport. However, when the passport failed to surface, the captain informed Inbar that she would not be able to stay on the flight and a sobbing Inbar was escorted back to the main gate.

Minutes after the plane departed from the gate and began its preparation for takeoff, one of Inbar’s fellow campers found the passport in another girl’s backpack and excitedly reported the find to the flight attendants. In response, the pilots immediately stopped the plane and, after consultation with air control, returned to the gate to pick her up. Read more here.

{Matzav.com Newscenter}


  1. Why is this an ashrecha yisroel moment? Would not a lovely gentile pilot do the same? Seems to me that there are nice and non nice Jews. Same holds true about the goyim, no?

  2. why you all have to say a nasty comments about what the pilot did? or why another girl had it in her bag? just look at the good that b”h she got on the plane and was able to make the flight with the found passport. remember its elul so think what you should write before you write it. as also the girl should have a refuah shilama!!!!

  3. #13 true the plioy should have ignored it, but he may not have had a choice. He did what a yid with a yiddishe heart would do by turning the plane around.

    #14, Of course there are chasidey umos haolam! And had it been a gentile who tunred around, you probably be very impressed. Perhaps the reason you are unimpreseed by this story becuase it was a fellow Jew who did a beautiful thing, and, weve grown to expect this from all Jews. Yes this is how most Jews behave. And indeed most Gentiles would not have had such courtesy. While the Gentiles outnuber us many times over, these stories are not the every day norm for them and therefore make the headlines.
    Are you really serious, do you really believe that the good behavior of jews and non jews are about even & the same?

  4. Lovely story,but ELAL,please….be consistant,the next time you are taxying to the runway and it’s obvious that you’r not gonna reach your destination before the onset of Shabbos,please show your yiddisher harts then as well,and return to the terminal..

  5. #14 I understand your thoughts, but in reality it is completely unfeasible. There are heavy penalties for staff of a scheduled/chartered airline service landing in the US with a WOP passenger, that in addition to likely airline dismissal (for pilots and for cabin personnel) and loss of livelyhood, because it’s not exactly they would find a job at another airline the following day, all air carriers are having a tough time and civil aviation is even worse off.

    While a passport can be lost / destroyed in flight (e.g. toilet) and passenger list had already been sent to USA before takeoff as it’s been routinely done for a decade or so, it would be very hard (=impossible) to deny the evidence, as the dialogues are recorded and no doubt they discussed the issue in the cockpit and with control tower. Also, what happens after landing in USA? It is unlikely that personnel from the Israeli consulate can be at the airport and issue a new passport before the flight takes off again, and even if possible, it’s even less likely US authorities would allow it. The child would just have to reboard towards TLV (can you imagine?) with the airline scrambling to find medical personnel without advance notice. There would be no other chance for the girl to attend the camp, both because she can’t keep flying back and forth for medical reasons and because USA are likely to ban her for entrance, at the very least for a few months.

    Also, an incident of this magnitude, a scheduled/chartered flight deliberately carrying a WOP, might carry consequences for the airline and for bilateral agreements, not just for the employees, when it is determined that staff were aware the passport was missing.

    I suppose that, had the passport not been found, a new one would have been quickly issued and arrangements would be made for the child to board a regular flight as a medically-assisted passenger the following day, but that would have been very expensive, not to mention the stress for the girl. I am very glad the passport was found in time, and kol hakavod to flight & ground El Al personnel and to control tower (both have to authorize a plane to return to gate).