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Keith Young was lovingly known as the “Firehouse Chef.” When he wasn’t fighting fires or taking care of his three kids, he was cooking. His expertise in the kitchen led him to create a cutting board with a detachable compartment for scraps called the Cup Board Pro. His dream was to pitch the product on “Shark Tank,” but he passed away before he ever got the chance .
This is when his kids stepped in. His three children, Kaley, Christian and Keira, appeared on an episode of “Shark Tank” that aired on Oct. 21 to make their dad’s dream come true. They shared his story, along with his invention, to the show’s judges.
“Our dad invented the Cup Board Pro, and it was his dream to pitch in on ‘Shark Tank,'” Kaley said. “Unfortunately, he passed away before he had that chance. We’re here today to continue his legacy and make that dream a reality.”
You can see in the segment posted to the Viral Trends YouTube channel how their family’s story brought the judges to tears:
Young, who joined the FDNY in 1998, aided during the Sept. 11 attack on New York City. He passed away three months before the taping of the show from synovial sarcoma, a rare form of cancer he developed likely due to the exposure to asbestos, lead, and burning jet fuel during cleanup at Ground Zero. His children are now the only surviving members of the family, as his wife passed away from breast cancer in 2012.
Once the kids had pitched the Cup Board Pro, the judges came together and jointly offered $100,000 for a 20 percent stake in the business, USA Today reported. They also announced plans to donate profits to a charity for firefighters affected on Sept. 11.
The judges weren’t the only ones impressed by the Cup Board Pro, either. At the time of publication, the product was sold out on Amazon.
Those who have tried the product seem to love it. “Bought this and happily got rid of all my other cutting boards,” one satisfied customer wrote in a review on Amazon. “It really is a game changer in the kitchen.”
Another pointed out just how versatile the detachable cup is.
“The removable cup is so versatile, whether you use it to discard the unwanted scraps and then empty in one motion into the trash or to collect your chopped onions, garlic to your simmering pot of sauce on the stove,” the review reads. “Brilliant idea, quality construction and an absolute staple for every kitchen.”
As a way of showing their gratitude for all of the support they’ve received, the Young children have started a GoFundMe page and intend to donate all money raised to FDNY Foundation’s Fired Up for a Cure. In just four days, they’ve managed to raise almost $23,000 of their $25,000 goal.
To support this family’s charitable efforts, visit their GoFundMe page. And be sure to stay on the lookout for the Cup Board Pro to become available to shop again.