Fort Myers pioneer native story featured on Broadway tour

FORT MYERS, Fla. – As a girl, Beverley Bass used to watch flights depart and arrive at Page Field in Fort Myers with a sense of dread. She knew her dream in life was to become a pilot.

At the age of 24, Beverly made history as the third female pilot for American Airlines. She is one of the few female commercial pilots in the country.

Of the thousands of flights in his career, Beverley’s experience on September 11, 2001 is the most memorable. She was flying from Paris to Dallas when she was ordered to land in Gander, Newfoundland when US airspace closed.

“We landed in a pretty unique town,” says Beverley of the community of only about 9,000 residents and two traffic lights.

From the moment Beverley and her passengers arrived at Gander, the town welcomed them with open arms. They cook and treat guests as if they were honored guests.

“When we left on September 15, 2001, I looked at my crew and said I just wanted the world to know the story of Gander,” Beverley said.

Beverley’s experience in Gander is now the focus of the Broadway production “Come From Away”. The show will run at the Barbara B. Mann Performing Arts Hall in Fort Myers through Sunday.

ALSO READ: Review of 2: “Come From Away” offers Fort Myers pioneer native story featured on Broadway tour

Emma Bowman

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