In Memory of Welles Remy Crowther

In Memory of Welles Crowther

Welles Remy Crowther was 24 years old and from Upper Nyack, N.Y. Welles worked for Sandler O'Neill and Partners on the 104th floor in the South Tower of the World Trade Center.

Witnesses report that after United Airlines Flight 175 hit the South Tower, Welles Crowther, with a red bandanna covering his mouth and nose to protect him from the debris, re-entered the building at least three times to rescue people. He is directly responsible for saving the lives of at least 12 people.

Among those rescued include Judy Wein and Ling Young, the latter of whom keeps a picture of him in her house. Welles, with members of the FDNY, had been on their way back up the South Tower when it collapsed.

Welles Crowther's body was found 6 months later on March 19, 2002 on the side of the lobby of the South Tower of World Trade Center.

Below is Welles Crowther's complete 9/11 story, taken from the Welles Remy Crowther Charitable Trust website.

"On September 11, 2001 when the attacks on the World Trade Center began, Welles was no longer an equities trader. He became a firefighter.

Through telephone calls, Welles was known to have been in his office at approximately 9:00 AM.

However, he was recovered on March 19, 2002 along with NYFD firefighters and emergency services personnel who had been operating a NYFD Command Center in the lobby of the South Tower.

Welles' final hour remained a mystery until an article about September 11th printed in The New York Times (5/26/02) mentioned eyewitness reports of a mysterious man in a red bandanna on the 78th floor Sky Lobby of 2 World Trade Center when the second plane crashed into the south tower.

This is where Welles was likely to have been at that time, since he was ultimately able to get down to the main lobby before the tower collapsed.

Eyewitnesses reported that, after the plane had hit into the Sky Lobby, a man suddenly appeared "out of nowhere". He was stripped to his T-shirt and wearing a red bandanna to cover his nose and mouth, protection against the smoke and debris.

This man organized a rescue effort on the floors high above where the official rescue workers were able to reach. He called for fire extinguishers, he found and directed dazed and confused victims to the only stairwell that was open for escape, and he carried a woman down to the 61st floor, then returned to the 78th floor to rescue more people. He turned back up once again after bringing the second group of survivors down.

Eyewitnesses report that the man spoke calmly, with authority, and was obviously well trained. He is reported to have saved many lives that day.

Knowing that her son always carried a red bandanna in his back right pocket, Welles' mother believed that the description of the mysterious man fit her son: his character, his training and his likely location at the time. She sent recent photographs of her son to the eyewitnesses.

The witnesses confirmed that Welles Crowther was the "Man in the Red Bandanna" who helped to save their lives and others on September 11th.

The Crowther Family ultimately learned, almost 3 years later, that Welles and the members of FDNY with whom he was recovered, had been on their way back up the South Tower with a Hearst "jaws of life" tool to free victims who were trapped under debris, presumably in the Sky Lobby."


  1. What a brave young man as were all the firefighters with him. He will be rememebered in the hearts he saved.

  2. RIP. A real gentleman and a national hero.


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