Fatima Ali‘s Family Breaks Silence on 'Top Chef' Star's Death

The family of late Top Chef competitor Fatima Ali has issued a statement on her passing.

A family member shared a collage to Ali's Instagram account that featured various images of the 29-year-old chef. The caption featured details of Ali's final hours, as well as details on the impact she left on her loved ones.

"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," the family member wrote. "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.

"Though she's no longer here with us, her spirit will continue to steer us. We hope that you, too, will listen to her lessons: Live your life as she did — to the fullest. Pursue your passion; spread love and joy; be kind and forgiving; be generous; enjoy every morsel — from humble street food to decadent fine dining; cook for the people you love. Travel the world and seek out adventure. Help others and don't be afraid to take the road less taken. Fatima will always be a part of us, and in fact if you look deep enough, you may find your own inner Fati. If you're lucky enough to find her there, trust her, listen to her, because she will change your life for the better."

The family member then details some of the lessons she taught those close to her, both practical and emotionally.

"We've learned a great deal over the course of her illness, not only pragmatic lessons we wish we hadn't needed to learn about her disease and our health system, but about the immense love of which people are capable; about the power of being true to yourself; about how we can be better if we model ourselves after someone like her," they wrote.

Before concluding, the family also wished to express their gratitude to all of Ali's fans and friends who have supported them during this trying time.

"We want to thank everyone from the bottom of our now broken hearts," they wrote. "We're eternally grateful for the unending support, love, and generosity shown by people along the way — from random strangers we passed on the street who would tell her how much they admire and respect her; to all her doctors and nurses who did their best; the chefs and hospitality friends who are now part of our extended family; and the big wigs that reached out to see how they can make her dreams a reality."

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They added, "This has been a truly humbling experience for us all and even in her last chapter as she began to leave us, Fatima showed us how we should live."

Photo Credit: Instagram / @cheffati