Aaron Grissom, a Top Chef season 12 contestant, died in a motorcycle accident.
Grissom died Tuesday after suffering “multiple blunt injuries” in the incident in Washington state.
The Pierce County medical examiner ruled the death an accident. He was 34 years old.
A friend of Grissom’s – Yu Nanakornphanom, who worked with Aaron at Moshi Moshi ramen bar – told the website that the crash happened at Chambers Bay near Tacoma.
Tragic accident: Aaron Grissom, who competed on Top Chef: Boston in 2014, died in a motorcycle accident near Tacoma, Washington. He was 34 years old
The News Tribune reported that University Place police responded to the scene as witnesses performed CPR on Grissom.
Witnesses at the scene said they saw Grissom approaching a bend at high speed and heard the motorcycle’s engine revving high, according to the police report.
It looks like he lost control of his 2018 Suzuki GSX-R750 while crossing a roundabout and hitting a sidewalk. He was wearing a helmet, police confirmed.
Grissom, while living in Los Angeles at the time, competed on Top Chef: Boston in 2014 against 15 other contenders, but didn’t go too far in the competition.
At that time, he was a chef at Bow & Truss in North Hollywood.
Prior to Top Chef, he appeared on Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives in an episode that visited the Dirty Oscar Annex in Tacoma.
Grissom was back in Tacoma and working as a chef before the pandemic forced some restaurants to close.
Aaron had worked as a chef in Los Angeles and Washington state and had recently lived in Mexico after the pandemic hit the restaurant industry.
He had also cooked for touring singers such as Billie Eilish before concerts were canceled due to COVID-19.
Nanakornphanom said Grissom was living in Mexico with his girlfriend after work dried up earlier this year. He told the Tribune that his return to Tacoma was unexpected.
He paid tribute to his friend who he said gave him a kidney.
“We were joking and he said, ‘I can give you a kidney. “It turns out we were a match – we’re both Type O. It is very rare to find Type O,” Nanakornphanom told the News Tribune.
Nanakornphanom told Aaron that he could face a three to four year wait for a kidney and Aaron didn’t hesitate to offer him his kidney.
A friend of Grissom’s said he was living in Mexico with his girlfriend after restaurant work dried up earlier this year. He told the Tribune his return to Tacoma was unexpected