As the anniversary of 9/11 approaches, chefs from New York to Mumbai will pause and take a moment to tie in a red bandana in remembrance of Welles R. Crowther, who represents the bravery found that day among the horror of hate and destruction.
A young man who dreamed of being a firefighter but became instead a financial trader, he gave his life to save other, still wearing his good luck red bandana.
He brought the frightened and confused to their feet in the burning building urging, “Everyone who can stand, STAND NOW. If you can help others, DO SO.” Then he led group after group to safety only to meet his own death high within the now collapsing south Tower.
He was a remarkable young man who had learned early in life the “there was no ‘I’ in the word team”. And this is a concept known to all the professionals of our industry - we are a team. But a team that extends beyond the boundaries of our properties.
We serve the world and so the model we project should be a mirror to the world of what life might be – gracious and kind, inclusive and receptive.
Welles Crowther could have run, thinking only of himself. Instead he turned, as the chefs and staff of Windows on the World did, to help, to serve, to say we are not alone in this world.
Ths September 11th will you be wearing a red bandana to tell others that life truly matters, that caring matters in every thing we do?
Your Culinary World copyright Ana Kinkaid/Peter Schlagel 2011