MasterChef Junior star Ben Watkins has sadly passed away at the age of 14 after a battle with cancer.
Watkins, who competed in season six of the cooking contest in 2018, died on Monday (November 16), a few months after his angiomatoid fibrous histiocytoma diagnosis, according to his relatives.
Attorney Trent McCain shared a statement from Ben's family on Twitter, with his grandmother and uncle saying: "After losing both his parents in September 2017, we have marveled at Ben's strength, courage and love for life. He never, ever complained. Ben was and will always be the strongest person we know."
Chef Gordon Ramsay, who hosts MasterChef Junior, shared a tribute to Ben on Twitter, writing: "We lost a Master of the @MasterChefJrFOX kitchen today. Ben you were an incredibly talented home cook and even stronger young man.
"Your young life had so many tough turns but you always persevered. Sending all the love to Ben Watkins' family with this terrible loss."
The show's official Twitter account also paid tribute to Ben, calling him "a tremendous role model".
"It is with great sadness that we mourn the passing of Ben Watkins, a beloved member of the MasterChef Junior family. Ben overcame so much in his life with a remarkably positive attitude," the statement reads.
We lost a Master of the @MasterChefJrFOX kitchen today. Ben you were an incredibly talented home cook and even stronger young man. Your young life had so many tough turns but you always persevered. Sending all the love to Ben Watkins’ family with this terrible loss Gx pic.twitter.com/RX81hP7lbw
— Gordon Ramsay (@GordonRamsay) November 17, 2020
"He was a tremendous role model for chefs of all ages and will be dearly missed by everyone at EndemolShine North America and FOX Entertainment."
Ben was 11 years old when he competed on MasterChef Junior, making it to episode five before he was eliminated. In his time on the show, he cooked chicken breast, a fruit tart, halibut and rack of lamb and also created a milkshake.
Ben also used to cook at his family's restaurant, Big Ben's Bodacious Barbecue, Baker & Deli in Indiana.
His family has created a #Love4Ben Memorial Fund in his memory.
Digital Spy has launched its first-ever digital magazine with exclusive features, interviews, and videos. Access the latest edition with a 1-month free trial, only on Apple News+.
Interested in Digital Spy's weekly newsletter? Sign up to get it sent straight to your inbox - and don't forget to join our Watch This Facebook Group for daily TV recommendations and discussions with other readers.
You Might Also Like