Lowcountry chef remembers Anthony Bourdain

CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - People across the world are mourning the loss of CNN host Anthony Bourdain.

Bourdain left his mark on the Lowcountry in 2015 when he featured Charleston in an episode of "Parts Unknown."

Chef Benjamin Dennis helped Bourdain explore parts of Charleston is mourning the loss of a friend. 

“Shock, questioning why," Dennis said. "You never know what’s going through somebody’s…going on in somebody’s life. So, it was more like, why?”

Dennis said he’s still trying to wrap his head around the news of Bourdain's death. 

"We had some good times off camera. It was just talking about culture, being a chef. Really nice guy, really nice. Really really nice,” he said.

While in Charleston Bourdain hit all of the hot spots. Husk, a River Dogs game and of course, Waffle House.

But his trip wasn’t complete without getting a taste of the culture unknown to many. Dennis brought him to Mosquito beach to share food from Charleston’s Gullah culture.

“I wanted to bring him out to a place that still holds on to a culture," he said. "I mean the history out there is so deep.”

The two shared groundnut soup, and conch stew. Dennis says he was excited to share his culture with someone so knowledgeable. He says Bourdain was eager to absorb every piece of information.

“The man has seen so much, you know he saw so much in the world," he said. "Seeing so many different places. It was more of him learning something but him seeing a side of Charleston that a lot of people don’t get to see.”

But even with his undeniable success, Bourdain had his own set of issues like most of us do.

Dr. Harish Mangipudi, a psychiatrist with Trident Medical, says this incident should open up the dialogue. 

“I think as a society we need to realize this thing is real there is no stigma associated mental health. We all feel. I think that’s the one universal thing we all have in common.” Mangipudi said. 

Coming off the heels of two high profile suicides in one week, its important to recognize the warning signs. Those include sleeping more or sleeping less, having conversations where your friends seem disconnected, not enjoying activities that once made you happy.

Mangipudi says always a strong support system is the best foundation for prevention. 

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