Drag queen Chi Chi DeVayne, best known for competing in two seasons of Ru Paul’s Drag Race, has died aged 34.
DeVayne, whose non-stage name was Zavion Davenport, appeared in the eighth season of the series, as well as the third season of Ru Paul’s Drag Race All Stars.
She posted on Instagram last week that she was in the hospital for chronic illness – the second time this year.
Ru Paul paid tribute to DeVayne, saying he was “heartbroken” to learn of his death.
“I am so grateful that we were able to discover his kind and beautiful soul,” he said in a statement posted on the show’s Twitter account. “She will be sadly missed, but never forgotten. May his generous and loving spirit shine upon us all. ”
Former contestants and fans of the show also paid tribute to DeVayne.
DeVayne’s first appearance on Ru Paul’s Drag Race aired in 2016, where she wowed the judges with her ingenuity and sharp wit.
Her lip-sync with Dreamgirls’ And I Am Telling You I’m Not Going is also considered iconic in Drag Race history. The show’s contestants perform lip syncs when at risk of being eliminated.
She finished in fourth place, but was invited to appear on the spinoff show Ru Paul’s Drag Race All Stars, which aired in early 2018. She finished in eighth place.
Later in 2018, DeVayne was diagnosed with scleroderma, a disease that attacks internal organs.
She was rushed to hospital in July – she told her Instagram followers it was for kidney failure. She was discharged later that month, but returned to the hospital last week – this time, she said, with pneumonia.
“Keep me in your prayers,” she said in a video message to her fans. ” I come back soon. “