Anthony Bourdain's death was hard on a lot of people. The celebrity chef took his life at the age of 61, and since then, many people from all around the world have sent their tributes and condolences.
Among all these messages of consolation, a few clearly stood out.
One story in particular, which came from an elderly woman Bourdain had met earlier, did not go unnoticed. The lady had written a review about the local Olive Garden.
That was back in 2012 when Marilyn Hagerty was 85 years old. She wrote a review post about a trip she had to a new Olive Garden in her town.
Here's what she wrote:
"After a lengthy wait for Olive Garden to open in Grand Forks, the lines were long in February. The novelty is slowly wearing off, but the steady following attests the warm welcome."
Olive Garden is very popular around the country, and that made the woman's review seem a little naïve.
"The server first brought me the familiar Olive Garden salad bowl with crisp greens, peppers, onion rings, and yes — several black olives. Along with it came a plate with two long, warm breadsticks."
"The chicken Alfredo ($10.95) was warm and comforting on a cold day. The portion was generous. My server was ready with Parmesan cheese."
However, it was the conclusion to her review that many people found funny:
"All in all, it is the largest and most beautiful restaurant now operating in Grand Forks. It attracts visitors from out of town as well as people who live here."
The review soon went viral, and comments started flowing in. Mostly, they were critical.
Hagerty did not know how the post got so much attention. She was not familiar with social media, and she did not know what many people found so humorous about her post at the time.
That is why Bourdain's comment stood out because many other people on social media were critical of the woman's review.
The cooking legend sent this tweet in response:
"Very much enjoying watching Internet sensation Marilyn Hagerty triumph over the snarkologists (myself included)."
Bourdain went a step further and flew the woman, a food critic, out to have some good time at one of his restaurants. He also published a book on her columns, and he wrote this in the foreword:
"Anyone who comes away from this work anything less than charmed by Ms. Hagerty - and the places and characters she describes - has a heart of stone. This book kills snark dead."
After the celebrity chef died, the woman had a very touching message to share with the world about him:
"You just would like to sit and have coffee with him, or booze, or whatever he's having. To me, he was a warm person, and you liked to spend time with him because he was interested."
The woman also mentioned how she and Bourdain had talked for hours over coffee. In her observation, Bourdain was never self-absorbed, and he was genuinely interested in learning more about her life:
"I am sorry that Anthony Bourdain died. I'm especially sorry about the way he died, and, of course, I'm forever grateful for the fact that he chose to enter in and take up my side in the dispute that I had nothing to do with."
Bourdain touched the lives of many ordinary people even though he was a celebrity who rubbed shoulders with the big and famous. His noble and down-to-earth spirit is evident in stories like Hagerty's.