His name is Welles Remy Crowther and he’s a hero.
On September 11, 2001, Welles was working in the South Tower in the World Trade Center. Before the second plane hit the South Tower, Welles had called his mother to tell her he was okay. When the second plane hit, Welles’ parents knew their son was gone. What they didn’t know was their son was saving peoples lives.
They realized what their son had done when they read an article in the New York Times of a man in a red bandanna/handkerchief:
A mysterious man appeared at one point, his mouth and nose covered with a red handkerchief. He was looking for a fire extinguisher. As Judy Wein recalls, he pointed to the stairs and made an announcement that saved lives: Anyone who can walk, get up and walk now. Anyone who can perhaps help others, find someone who needs help and then head down.
In groups of two and three, the survivors struggled to the stairs. A few flights down, they propped up debris blocking their way, leaving a small passageway to slip through.
A few minutes behind this group was Ling Young, who also survived the impact in the sky lobby. She, too, said she had been steered by the man in the red bandanna, hearing him call out: “This way to the stairs.” He trailed her down the stairs. Ms. Young said she soon noticed that he was carrying a woman on his back. Once they reached clearer air, he put her down and went back up.
Welles carried around a red bandanna since he was a child and it became his signature. His parents had no doubt the man the survivors were speaking about was their son.
Welles saved many lives on that horrific day. He gave his life to save others, and he, along with countless other heroes that day, will never be forgotten.