Anthony Bourdain was fearless with culture and cuisine. His legacy will live on.

On Friday, June 8, world-renowned chef and host of "Parts Unknown" Anthony Bourdain was found dead in a hotel room in France.

Photo by Mike Coppola/Getty Images.

The 61-year-old celebrity reportedly died from an apparent suicide.


Bourdain, who seemingly had a wonderful, fulfilling life, has been uncommonly open about mental illness, his struggles with addiction, and the challenges of dealing with depression while being a leader in the food industry. For many, Bourdain was a glimpse at what a dream job and life could entail. Traveling, eating, and making people around the world feel like their culture is meaningful, without demeaning or belittling their way of life.

Bourdain's death is resonating near and far. Celebrities, food writers, and chefs around the world are stunned and heartbroken over the news.

Anthony Bourdain's rise in the chef community was profound and a true example of the American dream. A 1978 graduate of the Culinary Institute of America, Bourdain found his love of cooking on a trip to France.

After rising the ranks in New York City kitchens, Bourdain spent many years as executive chef at Brasserie Les Halles. His 2000 book "Kitchen Confidential: Adventures in the Culinary Underbelly" was his first big step making a name for himself in the industry. From there, a series of books and travel-food hybrid shows followed, including "A Cook's Tour" and perhaps his most well-known work, "Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations."

Photo by Robin Marchant/Getty Images for Tribeca Film Festival.

Bourdain grew in popularity not only because of an unparalleled work ethic and a particular, distinctive food taste but also for his ability to explore other nations far different from our own in an ethical and understanding way. Using food as a bridge, Bourdain looked for the ways humans could connect and amplified that message.

Bourdain's death is a shock to the world and, and it hit me especially hard. In a particularly challenging 12 months of life, Bourdain's show, his charisma, and his writing brought a level of joy and inspiration that's helped me get through some tough days.

Bourdain brought global culture and cuisine to the living rooms of people around the world.

Bourdain's love of exploring the world showed in every aspect of his life and work. Bourdain's ability to bring countries like Italy, Vietnam, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and so many others to the dinner table with admiration and praise was a characteristic he mastered. It made our world better, more understanding, and less divided, and his impact will have lasting effects in an ever-changing society.

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No one should feel they have the right to tell a woman when, where, and how she can breastfeed. The stigma should be placed on those who have the nerve to tell a woman feeding her child to "Cover up" or to ask "Where's your modesty?"

Breasts were made to feed babies. Yes, they also have a sexual function but anyone who has the maturity of a sixth grader knows the difference between a sexual act and feeding a child.

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The Me Too movement has shed light on just how many actresses have been placed in positions that make them feel uncomfortable. Abuse of power has been all too commonplace. Some actresses have been coerced into doing something that made them uncomfortable because they felt they couldn't say no to the director. And it's not always as flagrant as Louis C.K. masturbating in front of an up-and-coming comedian, or Harvey Weinstein forcing himself on actresses in hotel rooms.

But it's important to remember that you can always firmly put your foot down and say no. While speaking at The Hollywood Reporter's annual Actress Roundtable, Jennifer Lopez opened up about her experiences with a director who behaved inappropriately. Laura Dern, Awkwafina, Scarlett Johansson, Lupita Nyong'o, and Renee Zellweger were also at the roundtable.

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Courtesy of Macy's

In many ways, 18-year-old Idaho native, Hank Cazier, is like any other teenager you've met. He loves chocolate, pop music, and playing games with his family. He has lofty dreams of modeling for a major clothing company one day. But one thing that sets him apart may also jeopardize his future is his recent battle against a brain tumor.

Cazier was diagnosed in 2015. When he had surgery to remove the tumor, he received trauma to his brain and lost some of his motor functionality. He's been in physical, occupational, and speech therapy ever since. The experience impacted Cazier's confidence and self-esteem, so he's been looking for a way to build himself back up again.

"I wanted to do something that helped me look forward to the future," he says.

Enter Make-A-Wish, a nonprofit organization that grants wishes for children battling critical illnesses, providing them a chance to make the impossible possible. The organization partnered with Macy's to raise awareness and help make those wishes a reality. The hope is that the "wish effect" will improve their quality of life and empower them with the strength they need to overcome these illnesses and look towards the future. That was a particularly big deal for Cazier, who had been feeling like so many of his wishes weren't going to be possible because of his critical illness.

"In the beginning, it was hard to accept that it would be improbable for me to accomplish my previous goals because my illness took away so many of my physical abilities," says Cazier. His wish of becoming a model also seemed out of reach.

But Macy's and Make-A-Wish didn't see it like that. Once they learned about Cazier's wish, they knew he had to make it come true by inviting him to be part of the magical Macy's holiday shoot in New York.

Courtesy of Macy's

Make-A-Wish can't fulfill children's wishes without the generosity of donors and partners like Macy's. In fact, since 2003, Macy's has given more than $122 million to Make-A-Wish and impacted the lives of more than 2.9 million people.

Cazier's wish experience was beyond what he could've imagined, and it filled him with so much joy and confidence. "It is like waking up and discovering that you have super powers. It feels amazing!" he exclaims.

One of the best parts about the day for him was the kindness everyone who helped make it happen showed him.

"The employees of Macy's and Make-A-Wish made me feel welcome, warm, and cared for," he says. "I am truly grateful that even though they were busy doing their jobs, they were able to show kindness and compassion towards me in all of the little details."

He also got to spend part of the shoot outdoors, which, as someone who loves climbing, hiking, and scuba-diving but has trouble doing those activities now, was very welcome.

Courtesy of Macy's

Overall, Cazier feels he grew a lot during his modeling wish and is now emboldened to work towards a better quality of life. "I want to acquire skills that help me continue to improve in these circumstances," he says.

You can change the lives of more kids like Cazier just by writing a letter to Santa and dropping it in the big red letterbox at Macy's (you can also write and submit one online). For every letter received before Dec. 24, 2019, Macy's will donate $1 to Make-A-Wish, up to $1 million. By writing a letter to Santa, you can help a child replace fear with confidence, sadness with joy, and anxiety with hope.

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