Chef David Chang became the first celebrity on the “Who Wants to Be a Millionaire” celebrity edition to win $1 million. He was playing for the Southern Smoke Foundation.
On Sunday, Chang risked $500,000 on the final question: “Although he and his wife never touched a light switch for fear of being shocked, who was the first president to have electricity in the White House?”
A) Ulysses S. Grant
B) Benjamin Harrison
C) Chester A. Arthur
D) Andrew Johnson
The celebrity chef didn’t even know that Benjamin Harrison, who was the correct answer, was a United States president. Thank goodness for Phone-a-Friend Mina Kimes.
“Uh, it’s not Grant,” the ESPN personality told Chang. “That would be the 1800s. I think it’s– it’s probably Harrison.”
Benjamin Harrison was the 23rd president of the United States. The grandson of William Henry Harrison served one term from 1889 to 1893. They’re the only grandfather and grandson combo of U.S. presidents in history.
“As much as I want to walk away, and the embarrassment I would have for the rest of my life for getting it wrong, it would mean more to me to get this right to put a spotlight on the industry in need,” Chang said. “And, at this point, the way things are — things are pretty bad.”
“This is so hard. I never imagined I’d be in the position. And I’ve always told myself I’m going for the million bucks,” he continued. “So I’m gonna let my stupid confidence — bravado — win out.”
He then locked in Harrison. Cue the spotlights and the celebration.
Watch Chang become the charity’s hero via the video above.
Southern Smoke is a crisis relief organization for people in the food and beverage industry.
Chris Shepherd launched the Southern Smoke Foundation in 2015 after learning that his friend and former sommelier Antonio Gianola was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. Readers can apply for funds or donate here.