Jessica Vogel, a former contestant on Hell’s Kitchen with Gordon Ramsay, has died at the tragically young age of 34.
That has fans wondering how Jessica Vogel died. What was her cause of death? Vogel appeared as a contestant on the 12th season of Ramsay’s cooking show. She was the 9th contestant eliminated, according to Deadline, and she also appeared on the Food Network’s Cutthroat Kitchen.
After attending cooking school in Colorado, Vogel got her start as a chef in New Jersey restaurants, according to Deadline.
Here’s what you need to know:
Jessica Vogel’s Cause of Death Was Heart Failure After a Bout of Colitis, Her Fiancee Says, But Her Obituary Says Substance Abuse Caused Damage to Her Health
According to North Jersey.com, Jessica Vogel’s fiancee, John Michael Keyser said Vogel “was being treated for colitis, a chronic inflammatory bowel disease, at a hospital in southern New Jersey.”
She died, he told the newspaper, when “her heart gave out.” Keyser told the newspaper that he was heartbroken by Vogel’s death and indicated they were planning to start a restaurant together. According to Web MD, “Ulcerative colitis (UC) is a disease that affects your large intestine, or colon. It causes irritation and swelling called inflammation. Eventually that leads to sores called ulcers in the lining there.”
Generally, people are able to treat the ailment, though. “There’s no cure yet, and people usually have symptom flare-ups off and on for life. The right treatments can help you keep a handle on the disease, though,” Web MD reports.
According to her obituary, public life took a toll on her.
“Jessica was fearless when it came to work, never backing down from a challenge. She competed on Hell’s Kitchen and Cutthroat Kitchen, becoming a local legend for foodies in Bergen County, N.J. In these difficult times, there is immense pressure on young people to stand out in a world where the intimate details of our lives are made public in blogs and on Facebook. This took a toll on Jessica and over the years; she would escape to drugs and alcohol. She recently committed to living a better life and had graduated from an in-patient rehabilitation program with hopes of regaining control of her life,” the obituary says. “Unfortunately, the damage done over the years was too great, and she died, like she lived, a fighter.”
You can read the full obituary here.
Vogel Wrote That She Lived, Breathed & Dreamed About Food
Jessica Vogel had a website called “Chef Jersey Jess.” The profile reads, “Foolproof Recipes Made with Love…and a Little Sass.” Her Instagram profile is private but links to the website. She had a Facebook page under the name “Chef Jess Vogel.”
“Excited to try some recipes created by the girl who was dressed as a blueberry on Cutthroat Kitchen in front of Alton Brown? Well, you’re in luck. I live, breathe, and dream about food and am here to reveal some of my favorite recipes that I’ve made while being a chef or simply at home with family,” she wrote on the website.
Vogel hadn’t posted recently on Facebook. She wrote in March, “I have never cried cutting onions, but does break my heart when I don’t have avocado with my #fajitas!!!” She shared a link to a story about Beanie Babies in May 2018.
Although the post is no longer visible, the New Jersey newspaper reported that Vogel previously indicated she had a drinking problem in the past in a blog post last fall. She allegedly wrote: “I’m weeks away from 34 years old and got told I drink too much and have cirrhosis. Did it stop me from pouring shots of alcohol? Nope. Did my lifestyle of sex, drugs and foie gras come to a born again Christian revelation? F*** that noise…”
On her website blog, she shared recipes for things like pork dumplings and chocolate chip cookies.
She is also survived by her parents and her sister.