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This heroic man 'hugged' a terrorist. And it likely saved hundreds of lives.

You should remember the name Najih Shaker Al-Baldawi.

Najih Shaker Al-Baldawi is a hero by any definition.

His story is one that everyone should remember — especially those of us who live outside the Muslim world.

On July 7, 2016, Al-Baldawi spotted a member of the Islamic State (ISIS) disguised in a military uniform, sneaking his way toward the Sayyed Mohammad Shrine in Balad, Iraq.

The terrorist — who had strapped himself in explosives as part of a three-man suicide bomb team — was aiming to destroy the sacred structure and take as many innocent lives as possible.

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Courtesy of Chef El-Amin
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When non-essential businesses in NYC were ordered to close in March, restaurants across the five boroughs were tasked to pivot fast or risk shuttering their doors for good.

The impact on the city's once vibrant restaurant scene was immediate and devastating. A national survey found that 250,000 people were laid off within 22 days and almost $2 billion in revenue was lost. And soon, numerous restaurant closures became permanent as the pandemic raged on and businesses were unable to keep up with rent and utility payments.

Hot Bread Kitchen, a New York City-based nonprofit and incubator that has assisted more than 275 local businesses in the food industry, knew they needed to support their affiliated businesses in a new light to navigate the financial complexities of shifting business models and applying for loans.

According to Hot Bread Kitchen's CEO Shaolee Sen, shortly after the shutdown began, a third of restaurant workers that they support had been laid off and another third were furloughed.

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