The popular founder of Amsterdam Falafelshop at Adams Morgan has died of COVID-19 after a month in hospital. He was 70 years old.
Scott Bennett’s wife says the fact that her husband was fully immunized, boosted and enjoying good health is a reminder to continue to exercise care and caution around others.
“He rode his bike to see his favorite Nationals games,” Arianne Bennett said. “He biked everywhere, to lunch at Bethesda from Adams Morgan. It was his thing. He was a scuba diver.
She says she and her husband both fell ill with COVID-19 in December and were both fully vaccinated and strengthened.
When his breathing became difficult, they became concerned enough to go to the emergency room at George Washington University Hospital. She received monoclonal antibody treatment and was discharged from hospital and has since recovered.
But Scott – despite his good health and physical fitness – never left the hospital.
“I was not allowed to be with him, and the nurses who stroked his forehead and the nurses who took care of him and the doctors who cared about him as if he were their own and who called me and kept me in touch, I’m so grateful,” said Arianne Bennett.
Arianne described how much she appreciates the doctors and nurses who cared for him, trying experimental therapies. She also described her agony of not being able to comfort him as he lay dying.
A handwritten sign outside Amsterdam Falafel on NW 18th Street, which the couple founded in 2004, pays homage to the larger-than-life restaurateur everyone apparently knew.
“My husband was the person who introduced everyone to everyone at the bar, on the street, in any restaurant, at an airport,” Arianne said. “He’s the guy who sits and talks to anybody.”
Through her grief, Arianne Bennett says her husband’s death reminds her of the importance of caring for the health and safety of others.
“We are restaurateurs,” she says. “We want the restaurant industry to survive. Just make sure that when your server comes to your table, you put your mask on your face so you don’t lose your spouse, so you don’t lose your favorite person you’ve known for all these years.
Many social media tributes to Scott Bennett include the same description: an Adams Morgan legend.
One of his last acts of generosity occurred while he was dying. Some of his blood was taken for COVID-19 research which will hopefully save lives.