José Andrés memorializes WCK workers killed in Gaza at National Cathedral service


Celebrity chef and founder of nonprofit World Central Kitchen (WCK) José Andrés memorialized his seven employees killed during an aid mission in Gaza at a service at the Washington National Cathedral on Thursday.

“They risked everything to feed people they didn’t know and would never meet,” he said, saying his employees were the best of humanity. “Their examples should inspire us to do better, to be better.”

The seven aid workers were leaving a warehouse in Deir al-Balah in central Gaza after delivering food. They were driving in a “deconflicted zone” in two armored cars when an Israeli airstrike hit.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu claimed responsibility for the unintended strike and said it was a “tragic event,” but he also said things like this happen in war.

Andrés praised each of the workers during a tearful speech at the celebration of life. He said every innocent life taken is “one too many.”

“Food can never be a weapon of war. Humanitarians can never be targets because they are the best of us,” he said.

Second gentleman Doug Emhoff attended the memorial, representing the Biden administration, Politico noted.

After the strike, President Biden called Andrés to offer his condolences and released a statement that said he was “outraged” at the news of the workers’ deaths, including an American Canadian dual citizen.

Senator Chris Coons (D-Del.) was also in attendance for the memorial.

“As José Andrés said, we cannot ignore the suffering of those caught up in humanitarian disasters, and we can help the light shine through, even in the world’s darkest places,” Coons posted on the social platform X.

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