In The Event Of An Emergency, Put Your Sister In An Upright Position

Every year on the day after Christmas, children of divorced parents are shuttled across the United States, from one parent to the other.

2001 / Susan Burton / This American Life , USA


Every year on the day after Christmas, children of divorced parents are shuttled across the United States, from one parent to the other.

Airlines call these kids "unaccompanied minors." On December 26th, 1988, scores of unaccompanied minors were snowed in at Chicago's O'Hare airport. Susan Burton was one of them. She and her younger sister Betsy were traveling from Colorado, where their mom lived, to Michigan, where their dad lived.


produced by

Susan Burton

Susan Burton's writing has appeared in Slate, Mother Jones, New York, the New Yorker, and the New York Times Magazine.


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