'Big Brother': Julie Chen Speaks out About Season 1 Houseguest Cassandra Waldon's Death

Big Brother alum Cassandra Waldon has passed away after sustaining injuries from a car accident while overseas. The 56-year-old succumbed to her injuries while recovering from the accident that occurred two months ago in Rome, Italy. Waldon died after several weeks in the hospital, finally passing on Sept. 25. Her passing struck Big Brother host Julie Chen on Instagram, leading to a touching post including her invitation to Waldon's funeral according to PEOPLE.

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"Rest In Peace Cassandra," Chen captioned the post. "Your light will continue to shine in this world because of the way you lived your life: with class and grace. May your family and loved ones find solace and peace. Thank you for bringing your intelligence, warmth and wisdom to the Big Brother house Season 1. You are in my thoughts and in my prayers. May God Bless your soul."

Waldon was part of the inaugural season of Big Brother in the United States, standing out as the first contestant to enter the show's iconic house in the pilot episode way back in 2000.

Waldon did not win on the season but did last a decent amount of time, entering Day 1 and leaving on Day 72, finishing in sixth place. She also stood out as one of the older members of the cast in that first season, entering the house at age 37.

Fans of the show added their own thoughts to Chen's post, adding to the positive message sent by the host.

"[I'm] so sad. prayers going up for her family," one fan wrote.

"[Rest] in peace to one of the nicest houseguests ever," another fan wrote including several frowny faces.

"[Oh my God] noooo! So incredibly sad to hear. I just watched season 1 a few weeks ago. Rest In Peace, beautiful!" a third added.

Following the show, Waldon returned to her position with the United Nations as the Director of Communications for the International Fund for Agricultural Development according to PEOPLE.

"My work is very, very challenging, and rewarding, but I needed something exciting in my life," she said during her introduction on the show. "I've got to try this! I've got to see if I can do it!"

According to PEOPLE, Waldon sat for an interview with a youth observer named Donya Nasser and delivered a piece of wisdom that seems to describe her Big Brother foray.


“When there are many different opportunities and you have to decide which path to go down on, it’s important to go where your passions lie and be okay when down the course of your career those passions change and stray from what you originally planned,” Waldon shared.

Waldon's funeral will be held in her home in Maryland next weekend.