Jael Strauss, star of America’s Next Top Model, has died at the age of 34. Strauss announced to the world in October 2018 that she had been diagnosed with breast cancer. TMZ was the first to report that Strauss had passed on December 4. She had been a contestant on Season 8 of America’s Next Top Model.
On November 22, Strauss wrote that she was spending her first night in hospice care. The model posted on Facebook, “First night in hospice. So many things I never knew about life. Or death. So many things.” TMZ’s report on Strauss’ passing said that she had been unconscious in the days leading up to her death and her family were no longer allowing visitors. Her family released a statement to TMZ that read, “The one blessing was that we were able to show her how loved she was before she passed. She brought so much light to people.”
Strauss Had Accused Dr. Phil of Exploiting Her Addiction Issues; Strauss Celebrating Being 5 Years Sober in August 2018
In 2012, Strauss appeared on Dr. Phil in an attempt to tackle her addiction issues. Strauss later said that she felt exploited by the TV shrink. In August 2018, four months before her death, Strauss celebrated five years of sobriety. Strauss wrote on Instagram, “Today I have 5 years sober. Good God! I know a few things to be true: Miracles are real, Recovery is possible for everyone no matter how far gone you think you are, We are never too broken to be put back together, Service work feels better than the greatest high, Sobriety makes your weirder not normal and I’d be dead if it weren’t for all the love and forgiveness I’ve been showered with by my friends and family. Thank you to anyone that’s ever let me sponsor them. Thank you to my partner Cody Bear for showing me what real love is like. Thank you to all my beautiful family (blood and extended). Because of this gift I have no friends, only family. Love you all! Keep up the good fight. #Recovery #Sobriety #12steps #drphil #antm.”
Strauss Had Lost Her Health Insurance Just a Month Before Her Death
A GoFundMe page had been set up to help Strauss’ deal with the financial burden of her illness. The intro to that page reads, “Our favorite Earth Angel (or Alien?), Jael Strauss, needs our help. Jael, one of the most compassionate, generous, and kind-hearted beings in the universe, has been dealt a tough hand. Those of us who know her understand that she is a fighter, but this fight will be a long, rocky, and definitely expensive one.” That page described her condition as being aggressive Stage IV Rapidly Progressive Metastatic Inflammatory Breast Cancer, noting that the cancer had spread beyond her breast tissue.
The last update on the page said that Strauss’ had lost her health insurance due to her not being able to attend work. At that time, Strauss had been able to undergo outpatient chemotherapy. Shortly after leaving her hospital, Strauss had to return as her condition deteriorated.