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Top Chef Contestant Aaron Grissom Is Dead At 34 After Motorcycle Crash

Aaron Grissom on Top Chef: Boston

Aaron Grissom, who is best known for being a contestant on Top Chef, has died. The chef passed away this past Tuesday after being involved in a motorcycle crash in Washington state. He was 34 at the time of his death.

Local law enforcement told TMZ that Aaron Grissom lost control of his motorcycle after striking a curb in a roundabout. Sources say that before the crash, witnesses saw Grissom traveling through the roundabout at a high speed. The trade was also told that he was wearing a helmet and that no other vehicles or people were involved in the crash. Before first responders arrived to the scene, medics attempted to perform CPR on Grissom and other motorists also tried chest compressions.

According to the Pierce County medical examiner, Aaron Grissom suffered “multiple blunt force injuries” in the traffic accident. His death was ultimately ruled an accident.

In 2014, Aaron Grissom competed with 15 other contestants to earn the prestigious title in Top Chef: Boston. However, the young chef was eliminated from the season very early on. Aside from his work on Top Chef, he also appeared on Guy Fieri’s Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives. During the episode, Grissom met up with Fieri when the latter visited a restaurant called Dirty Oscar's Annex in Tacoma, Washington. Grissom was reportedly working in the Tacoma area at the time of his death.

Aside from working in Tacoma, the chef was also working as a touring cook with singers before the global health crisis shut things down. One of his most recent tours, according to The News Tribune, was with Billie Eilish.

Since the news of his death was first reported, a spokesperson for Bravo (via People) released a statement in which the network expressed its condolences:

Bravo and the Top Chef family are saddened to learn about the passing of Chef Aaron Grissom from Season 12: Boston. Our deepest sympathy goes out to his family and friends.

Yu Nanakornphanom, who owns the Moshi Moshi ramen bar where Grissom used to work, explained to The News Tribune that Grissom had been living in Mexico with his girlfriend during the pandemic and that his return to Tacoma was “unexpected.” When Grissom left his post as head chef of the ramen bar, he and Nanakornphanom parted on good terms. The restaurateur remembered Grissom fondly:

He had a lot going on. I think he had a good future ahead of him. He’s always learning to do something. He was driven. He lived his life fully.

Nanakornphanom also remembered how Grissom donated a kidney to him, as he was facing a years-long waiting list at the time.

We here at CinemaBlend extend our deepest condolences to Aaron Grissom’s loved ones at this time.

Erik Swann
Erik Swann

Covering superheroes, sci-fi, comedy, and almost anything else in film and TV. I eat more pizza than the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.