Top Chef star Justin Sutherland is opening up about his scary boating accident. After the renowned chef was hospitalized earlier this month, Sutherland on Sunday took to Instagram to reveal the injuries he suffered to his face after he fell off his boat near the motor over the July 4th weekend, promising fans that he is coming back stronger than before.
In the Sunday health update, marking the first since the initial statement confirming his hospitalization, Sutherland shared a close-up photo of his face. Sutherland suffered multiple lacerations to his face in the accident, which have now been stitched. In sharing the photo, Sutherland also shared an empowering quote, writing in the caption, "'The pain means you're alive. The scars mean you've survived.'" The caption added that Sutherland, who competed on Season 16 of Top Chef and is the winner of Iron Chef America, has "a 'few' more surgeries to go..."
Sutherland had been enjoying the Fourth of July weekend with friends in Minnesota when he fell from the boat he was captaining while attempting to retrieve his captain's hat. According to a GoFundMe page set up by his family, the restaurateur fell into the water near the motor, and "the propeller did a number on his head and left arm." Sutherland suffered a broken arm, a "severely broken" jaw, and "many lacerations" and was taken to the hospital, where his family said he would remain "for some time, having had many surgeries so far and facing many more to come."
"The great news is, he is going to be fine. With some time, he will possibly be better than fine. He is adding more character to the face we know and love, and the most important news, his beard is intact," the page added, explaining that "while he would love to talk to everyone as he is recuperating, his jaw is currently wired shut, so don't take it personally if he can't call you back just yet."
In addition to the more than $223,000 dollars that have been raised for Sutherland to help cover medical and other expenses throughout his recovery, Sutherland has been surrounded by well wishes from fans and colleagues. Replying to Sutherland's Monday post, Chef Lorena Garcia wrote, "wishing you prompt recovery." Fellow Chef Kevin "Red Beard" Gillespie commented, "Swift recovery my friend!!"