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'Red Bandana Man': A Little Known Hero of 9/11 Remebered

The anniversary of the September 11 terrorist attacks this month have many people remembering the victims of the tragedy. We also remember the heroes. One lesser known hero who gave his life to save others is known as 'Red Bandana Man.'

Welles Crowther, 24, wasn't a police officer, firefighter or soldier. He was an equities trader working in the South Tower of the World Trade Center. When the plane first struck the tower, Welles called home and left his mother a message: “Mom, this is Welles. I wanted you to know that I’m OK.”

Welles could have run out of the building at that point, and perhaps could have saved his own life. Instead, he chose to stay behind and help others. He found injured victims of the plane crash and gave them the leadership that they needed during the confusing and terrifying moment. He helped guide the injured, frightened people to the only unblocked stairwell and led them down until the group met firefighters coming up.

Again, Welles could have followed the group down with the firefighters, but instead, he went back up the stairs and looked for even more victims.

Survivors remembered him but didn't know who he was. All they remembered was the red bandana he wore. He became known as the heroic 'Red Bandana Man.'

It was that red bandana that finally helped his parents find out about his last moments. They knew Welles always carried around a red bandana since childhood. His father had given him a clean, white hanky and a red bandana when he was a boy. He told him one was for 'showing,' and one was for 'blowing.'

When reading survivors accounts, the Crowthers came across stories of the Red Bandana Man, and after contacting survivors it was confirmed that it was indeed their son.

Occasionally around ground zero you'll find a red bandana tied around a post or to a bench. You might even catch a glimpse of one in a fire house or police department near a 9/11 tribute. Now you'll know why it's there, and the brave young man it is meant to honor.

Source: Little Things
Photo: YouTube Screenshot

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