KPEL Guests Remember Anthony Bourdain After Acadiana Trip
According to a report from CNN, Anthony Bourdain has passed away. He was 61.
In an early Friday morning announcement, the network stated that Bourdain apparently committed suicide in France and was found by a close friend in his hotel room. Bourdain was there filming an upcoming episode of his award-winning show "Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown."
It is with extraordinary sadness we can confirm the death of our friend and colleague, Anthony Bourdain. His love of great adventure, new friends, fine food and drink and the remarkable stories of the world made him a unique storyteller. His talents never ceased to amaze us and we will miss him very much. Our thoughts and prayers are with his daughter and family at this incredibly difficult time.
According to CNN host Brian Stetler, Bourdain "had hung himself in his hotel room" in France. The celebrity chef was a master of his craft—both in the kitchen as a chef, in the media as a storyteller, and with his pen as a writer.
His travels covered different cultures and cuisine around the world, yielding numerous awards and accolades in the process. Season 11 of his CNN show "Parts Uknown" premiered last month and is set to air an episode (June 17) surrounding the traditional Mardi Gras celebration in South Louisiana.
Bourdain visited Mamou in a full Courir de Mardi Gras costume, including capuchon, and participated in the traditional chicken run. He also had a home cooked meal in Grand Coteau, ate at Laura's 2 restaurant, and scooped up some cracklins and boudin at Billy's Boudin in Opelousas. We hear that he also got to enjoy some zydeco music, and attended a crawfish boil
Bourdain was no stranger to the area—and from the food to the people (and even the Popeye's Buffet), he loved Cajun Country.
Local photographer Paul Kieu was contacted for Bourdain's most recent visit to film a segment for the current season of "Parts Unknown." As he looks back on his brief interactions with the crew during their Mardi Gras taping he remembers how much Bourdain genuinely loved the Acadiana area.
It was always great to see how Anthony Bourdain championed a small section of American culture by visiting Cajun/Creole country several times for his two major shows throughout the years. His shows gave me the travel bug and taught me that places worth traveling don’t have to be five star resorts with pristine beaches. They can be anywhere. Anyone and any place have stories to tell, and that’s what has inspired my career and travels over the past few years.
Perhaps the best description of Bourdain's adoration for Louisiana comes in the form of a Tumblr post he made back in August of 2011. In his own words, he described the unique qualities that made our area such a special place.
The South—particularly (but not exclusively) Louisiana, is where “American” food comes from. There are certainly other uniquely regional cuisines and specialties in this country—but creole and Cajun constitute uniquely American-born mutations. They could not have occurred anywhere else. Like the birth of jazz—they were created at bizarre yet magical intersections of cultures and circumstances—the end products of long journeys, much pain and simple pleasures.
Just last month, the celebrity chef praised Lafayette on a big stage as a three-day trip to the city was the backdrop of a Bourdain profile in People Magazine.
Bourdain leaves behind an 11-year-old daughter. His family is in our thoughts during this difficult time.
People struggling with suicidal thoughts are advised to call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255 or go to SpeakingOfSuicide.com/resources.