The Top Chef family of judges and contestants are mourning the death of Fatima Ali, who passed away after a long battle with a rare form of bone cancer.
The 29-year-old passed away on Friday after battling a rare form of bone cancer called Ewing Sarcoma. She had beaten it before but it returned in October. This time she was not able to fight it off with chemotherapy.
Top Chef star Bruce Kalman announced her passing with the post, “It’s with a heavy heart we say goodbye to Fatima Ali today, as she has lost her battle with cancer. I will miss you Fati, and you will be in my heart forever.”
A few days before passing, Ali wrote on her Instagram, “I know it’s been ages since I posted and most may have figured out why. I’m sick and unfortunately, I’m getting sicker. Right now all I need are prayers; prayers that are simple… I thank you a million times over for when you have given me joy. I’ll try to keep everyone updated the best that I possibly can.”
In a previous essay for Bon Appetit, she had written, “An odd sense of relief has settled inside me, knowing that I can finally live for myself, even if it’s just for a few more precious months.”
Her family and friends also updated her Instagram page to let the world know, “Fatima was at home with us, surrounded by her loved ones and beloved cat Mr. Meow, when she left us in the early hours of the morning. When someone as bright and young and vivacious as our Fati passes, the only metaphor that seems to fit is that of a star—a beacon in the darkness, a light that guides us, on which to make wishes, from which to weave dreams. For all the comfort and beauty they offer us, stars, too, are impermanent. This morning a great one was snuffed out.”
See what all her friends had to say about her here:
“So sad to learn that Chef Fatima Ali has lost her battle with illness. Grateful to have had the chance to see her shine.”
“My heart is so broken today, thanks for gracing my life, meeting my son, being my friend, and letting me into your incredible existence, I’ll miss you more than you can know. Until I see you again, I’ll keep a bottle of whiskey and a coffee cup ready for you.”
“She was beautiful inside and out. We will miss you forever. I’m honored that we crossed paths in this world. Thank you for sharing your story we love you.”
“It’s with a heavy heart we say goodbye to Fatima Ali today, as she has lost her battle with cancer. I will miss you Fati, and you will be in my heart forever. I’ll always remember the great times we had, especially our interview during the tailgating episode discussing football, stadiums, and Taylor Swift. Much love, Bruce.”
“My heart is broken. Thank you for shining your light and sharing your love and beautiful spirit with all of us.”
“You will be forever missed my friend. You brought so much joy to those around you.”
“I will miss you Fatima. Thank you for all the laughter, showing me some delicious food, but most of all your friendship. I know you’re somewhere singing with the angels. Love you.”
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I will miss you Fatima. Thank you for all the laughter, showing me some delicious food, but most of all your friendship. I know you’re somewhere singing with the angels. Love you. . #restinpower #season15strong #season15 #friends #familyfirst #topcheffamily #bravotopchef #topchef
“My heart is heavy today with news of the beautiful @cheffati passing away from her battle with cancer this morning. I’m at a loss right now of how much this sucks but grateful she’s no longer in pain. God is gaining another angel today and heaven will be full of laughter upon her arrival. She was a queen who carried a heart of gold and my prayers go out to her family. I’m so grateful for the time spent with her and the memories we shared. Please cherish the time you have with someone because tomorrow isn’t promised for anyone…”
“My dearest Fatima, this is how I will remember you till my time on earth is done. I will remember the hours on end we spent in the kid pool (the damn scratches) or the hot tub playing Never Have I Ever. Hearing you talk about your mom with so much love and wishing my kids would speak the same of me one day. Falling asleep talking about life/boys/ dreams. Sweet dreams our Pakistani princess, the pain is over.”
“Goodbye lil’ sis. One of our brightest stars has fallen from the sky… I have no words, but here are some of hers: “I dream of being better. I dream of being myself again, but I know I’ll never quite be the same, and that’s okay. I know I’ll be different, and, despite the worry that settles into me every time I wake up, I look forward to meeting that woman one day.”
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Goodbye lil’ sis. One of our brightest stars has fallen from the sky…. I have no words, but here are some of hers: “I dream of being better. I dream of being myself again, but I know I’ll never quite be the same, and that’s okay. I know I’ll be different, and, despite the worry that settles into me every time I wake up, I look forward to meeting that woman one day.” #teamfati
In a statement, they said, “We are deeply saddened to share the news that Fatima Ali has lost her courageous battle with cancer. Our thoughts are with her family and friends at this time. People not only fell in love with her cooking but fell in love with her personality and heart. We hope that the beautiful memories shared with her will provide comfort to everyone who knew and loved her.”
Rest in peace Fatima.