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White Washed Ben’s Chili Bowl Wall Badly Tagged – Write in Vote for Lt. Kevin McRae as a replacement to Honor his Memory

by Prince Of Petworth January 27, 2017 at 10:15 am 21 Comments


Yesterday morning we woke up to the happy news that the Bill Cosby mural had finally been removed from the Ben’s Chili Bowl mural on U Street. Alas the sad news was that President Obama, Chuck Brown and Donnie Simpson went down too. And this morning the wall quickly went from white to worse:

bens graffiti
Photo by Owen Comstock

So a replacement is needed post haste! We mentioned yesterday that Ben’s was taking a poll to see who the replacements will be this year. There were 56 options, with some uh interesting choices, with many very good ones. Another option was to write-in your choice. Yesterday DC Fireman commented that Lt. Kevin McRae would be an excellent selection to honor his memory. Lt. McRae perished fighting a fire in Shaw in 2015. This movement to vote Lt. McRae is starting to gain steam and I wholeheartedly endorse it. So if you are going to vote – please do include Lt. McRae of blessed memory. Thank you.

  • anon

    The owners of Ben’s were on NPR talking about this earlier today – they want people to tag the wall with messages of unity, peace, love, and hope while they are deciding what the next mural should be.

    • Ah thanks. That may be well intentioned but I suspect, like the “thanks obama” chalkboard in Adams Morgan, will not end well.

    • dunning-kruger

      That makes sense. I was kind of surprised by the positive messaging which is not typical of illegal graffiti.

    • FridayGirl

      Yeah, they said it on the news last night too. “Sure, come right on our wall!”

      • Squire of the Squangle

        I’m not sure that’s how I would have transcribed it — but seeing as how it’s your day I won’t quibble.

  • Ben

    One of my favorite quotes from the WashPost article about his death:
    “”Deahtra McRae, McRae’s ex-wife, said McRae was a firefighter so dedicated to his craft that he would go on long drives around D.C. just to map out the best ways to get to neighborhoods where he might later have to fight a fire. “

    • textdoc

      Wow! That’s impressive.

  • kwame

    Looks like one of the taggers is singer Raheem Devaughn who was also on their list for potential mural additions.

  • Hill Denizen

    I like the idea of honoring local heroes who often don’t get deserved recognition

  • Anna Van Valkenburgh

    Let’s put a real local hero up! Someone who was devoted to the city of Washington DC. I vote for Lt. Kevin McRae to receive the honor of being remembered on the wall.

  • Matt Gellert

    DCFD LT. Kevin McCrea

  • Nick Kovach

    DCFD Lt Kevin McRae

  • Sean k

    I vote Lt McRae

  • Kelton Ellerbe

    Lt. Kevin McCrae gave his life for the City he loved. He was a native Washingtonian and would be the most fitting choice to adorn the wall..

  • CP Miedzinski

    I vote LT McRae for the wall at Ben’s Chili Bowl!

  • Nick D

    Lt. McRae DCFD

  • Nicole

    Lt. McRae should definitely go up.

  • Lynn Brady

    I think the wall should. E dedicated to local heroes. Lt. Kevin McRae should be on that wall. He died in the line of duty and was truly a dedicated and devoted firefighter.

  • wpk_dc

    My hats off to McRae! But Ben’s is more than just a neighborhood place. McRae has no regional or national significance so I don’t think he’d be as good a pick as someone more iconic. Barack and Michelle would be my choice.

    • James W.

      Considering they just painted over Obama, I’m not sure he’s coming back. If Ben’s only exists in the DC metro, I’m not sure why it’s not a neighborhood place.


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