Wednesday, August 2, 2017

"The Red Bandanna"

My mom and I recently finished reading the book The Red Bandanna. Here is a synopsis of the book:

One Sunday morning before church, when Welles Crowther was a young boy, his father gave him a red handkerchief for his back pocket. Welles kept it with him that day, and just about every day to come; it became a fixture and his signature.

A standout athlete growing up in Upper Nyack, NY, Welles was also a volunteer at the local fire department, along with his father. He cherished the necessity and the camaraderie, the meaning of the role. Fresh from college, he took a Wall Street job on the 104th floor of the South Tower of the World Trade Center, but the dream of becoming a firefighter with the FDNY remained.

When the Twin Towers fell, Welles's parents had no idea what happened to him. In the unbearable days that followed, they came to accept that he would never come home. But the mystery of his final hours persisted. Eight months after the attacks, however, Welles's mother read a news account from several survivors, badly hurt on the 78th floor of the South Tower, who said they and others had been led to safety by a stranger, carrying a woman on his back, down nearly twenty flights of stairs. After leading them down, the young man turned around. "I'm going back up," was all he said.

The survivors didn't know his name, but despite the smoke and panic, one of them remembered a single detail clearly: the man was wearing a red bandanna.

The Red Bandanna is about a fearless choice, about a crucible of terror and the indomitable spirit to answer it. Examining one decision in the gravest situation, it celebrates the difference one life can make.

I heard about this book at the end of last year, and I thought it sounded really good, so I asked my mom to get it for me for my birthday. I have been fascinated by September 11 ever since the awful terrorist attack in 2001, which turned the date from an ordinary calendar date into an infamous one. I felt so inspired as I learned about Welles' life. Not just because of his selfless heroism on September 11, but in the way he lived his entire life. He was truly a wonderful person, through and through. The world needs more people like Welles Crowther in it! This book was really good, and definitely worth reading.


Kim Standard said...

Stopping by here to see what your up to....reading a good book is great

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