MasterChef star Ben Watkins dies at 14, few years after losing both parents to murder-suicide
Ben Watkins, the unique 14-year-old kid who put smiles on people’s faces on MasterChef Junior, has died after a devastating battle with cancer.
Reports say Ben had been fighting with an incredibly rare form of cancer for a year and a half. He became a star on season 6 of MasterChef Junior.
Family lawyer Trent McCain wrote a statement confirming the tragic news. The statement was written on behalf of the boy’s grandma, Donna Edwards, and his uncle, Anthony Edwards.
“After losing both his parents in September 2017, we have marveled at Ben’s strength, courage and love for life,” the statement read.
“He never, ever complained. Ben was and will always be the strongest person we know.”
— chicagodemoreel (@chicagodemoreel) November 18, 2020
According to reports, the boy’s parents both passed away in a murder-suicide back in 2017.
Afterward, he was diagnosed with angiomatoid fibrous histiocytoma, an extremely rare type of soft tissue cancer that has thus far affected only 6 people.
“When Ben’s rare illness was shared with the world, he was so heartened by the outpouring of love he received from every corner of the globe – especially here in his hometown of Gary, Indiana. We cannot thank this community enough for holding our family up in prayer and for all that you’ve done.
“Ben suffered more than his share in his fourteen years on this Earth, but we take solace in that his suffering is finally over and in that, in the end, Ben knew he was loved by so many,” the statement read.
A GoFundMe page was set up for Ben after his parents died, which has been modified since his passing. It has thus far raised more than $205,000.
Megastar chef Gordon Ramsay paid tribute to Ben by saying he was an “incredibly talented home cook and even stronger young man.”
We lost a Master of the @MasterChefJrFOX kitchen today. Ben you were an incredibly talented home cook and even stronger young man. Your young life had so many tough turns but you always persevered. Sending all the love to Ben Watkins’ family with this terrible loss Gx pic.twitter.com/RX81hP7lbw
— Gordon Ramsay (@GordonRamsay) November 17, 2020
Rest in peace, little Ben, and thank you for the warm memories.
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