Among those reeling were Jason Wang, CEO of Xi’an Famous Foods, who took to instagram to post a touching memory of how Bourdain changed his family’s life forever.
“Today’s a day of extreme sadness for us here at Xi’an Famous Foods. I’ve lost a dear friend today, and we mourn with the rest of the world.
“I remember the time in 2007 when Tony first visited our basement food stall in Flushing for Travel Channel’s ‘No Reservations’ while I was still in college (even though I didn’t know who he was at the time).
“I remember my father preparing interesting off-menu dishes to get his opinion on when he visited our store.
“I remember years later in 2015 after interviewing together for an article, I approached Tony and told him, while he may have no idea what he has done for our family and business by simply saying he enjoyed the food, I wanted him to know it helped bring our family out from living in one room in Flushing to living the American dream. We were able to grow our business and provide great food for our guests, and opportunities for our employees.
“I looked at him in the eyes and said, ‘this is something we will always be thankful for, Tony.’
“And he simply replied, ‘I’m just calling out good food like it is, that’s all.’
“In honor of his memory and all of those dear people who left us all too early, and in taking whatever action we can to prevent suicide in the US, Xi’an Famous Foods will be donating 100% of our net sales on June 8, 2018, from all of our stores, to the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-TALK.
“Please cherish all of our lives and help those who may be struggling.
“Rest in peace, Tony, and the most sincere condolences to Tony’s beloved family.”