11 Days of Heroes to September 11th, 2023: Welles Crowther

Image from the 9/11 Memorial & Museum

One man made a huge difference in guiding people to safety in the South Tower on 9/11. When the tower was hit, people on the 78th floor sky lobby huddled with no escape as far as they could tell. A man with a red bandana covering his mouth and nose appeared from smoke and wreckage and spoke in a calm voice. He guided them to a stairway and led them to safety, making three trips to the sky lobby and saving as many people as he could until the building collapsed.

Alison Crowther read an article about the man in the red bandana in The New York Times a few months after 9/11 and knew it was her son, 24-year-old Welles Crowther, who carried a red handkerchief with him since he was a boy. He was an equities trader and volunteer firefighter who risked his life to save others.

Image from the New York Times