'Top Chef' Star Fatima Ali Laid to Rest in Pakistan

The late Top Chef star Fatima Ali was laid to rest by her family in Lahore, Pakistan on Friday.

According to the News International, Ali's friends and family were in attendance, along with Justice Asif Saeed Khosa, the Chief Justice of Pakistan's Supreme Court. Mian Saqib Nisar, a former Chief Justice, also attended.

Ali died on Friday, Jan. 25 at the age of 29 after a battle with Ewing's sarcoma, a rare form of bone cancer. She was diagnosed with the disease in 2017, and was told she was cancer-free in early 2018. In September, her doctors told her that that cancer had returned.

Hours after her death, Ali's family published a heartbreaking statement on her Instagram page, alongside a collage of photos from her life.

"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 statement read. "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."

Two days after her death, Bon Appétit published a new essay by Ali, in which she discussed her accomplishments and how her cancer diagnosis changed her outlook on life.

"What is my intention? To live my life. To fulfill all those genuine dreams I have," she wrote. "It's easy to spend weeks in my pajamas, curled up in my bed, watching Gossip Girl on Netflix. I could totally do that. And don't get me wrong, I still watch Gossip Girl. But now I'm doing things. I'm going out to eat. I'm making plans for vacations. I'm finding experimental treatments. I'm cooking. I'm writing."

In an October essay, Ali wrote about the dreams she had for her last moments, from spending more time with family, to visiting friends' restaurants.

"It's funny, isn't it? When we think we have all the time in the world to live, we forget to indulge in the experiences of living. When that choice is yanked away from us, that's when we scramble to feel," she wrote at the time. "I am desperate to overload my senses in the coming months, making reservations at the world's best restaurants, reaching out to past lovers and friends, and smothering my family, giving them the time that I so selfishly guarded before."

Ali appeared on Top Chef Season 15 in 2017 and was diagnosed with cancer while the show was still airing. Although she did not win, she was named the fan-favorite chef of the season.

After her death, celebrities and Ali's co-stars shared tributes to her, remembering how she changed their lives.

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"I was lucky to share this visit with Fatima. I wish I could have shared more," Ellen DeGeneres tweeted. "Sending so much love to her family. I hope they find comfort in knowing how much light she brought to the world."

Photo credit: Food Network