‘Top Chef’ Star Justin Sutherland Severely Injured in Boat Accident

by Caitlin Berard

While Independence Day weekend is a universally beloved and exciting time for Americans, it also comes with a surprising amount of horrific tragedies. Every year, countless Americans suffer burns, heat stroke, food poisoning, and car and boating accidents. And sadly, Top Chef star Justin Sutherland fell victim to the latter over the holiday weekend this year.

On Sunday, the celebrity chef was enjoying a day in the sun when his beloved captain’s hat flew from his head and fell into the water. As he reached to retrieve it, he fell from the boat, landing on its still spinning propellers.

Following the terrible incident, those closest to Sutherland set up a GoFundMe in his name, hoping to raise money for his astronomical medical expenses.

Beneath the fundraiser, Beth Gillies, a close friend of the chef, penned a heartbreaking explanation of the accident and his injuries. “While piloting his boat, Justin’s hat blew off,” Gillies wrote. “He tried to grab it, hit a wave, and was knocked off the boat. He fell into the water near the motor, and the propeller did a number on his head and left arm.”

According to Gillies, Sutherland is now recovering from a broken arm and jaw. They remain hopeful, however, that he suffered no permanent nerve damage. “The great news is, he is going to be fine,” she wrote. “With some time, he will possibly be better than fine.”

“He is adding more character to the face we know and love. And the most important news, his beard is intact,” Gillies added jokingly. “Justin is currently in the hospital and set to be there for some time, having had many surgeries so far and facing many more to come.”

Family of ‘Top Chef’ Star Justin Sutherland Respond to Boating Accident

Though he reportedly remains in good spirits, TV star Justin Sutherland has a long road to recovery ahead of him. Thankfully, he received an overwhelming amount of support from his friends and fans, his GoFundMe page already garnering an incredible $104,000.

That said, with a broken arm and a jaw wired shut, Justin Sutherland was unable to make a statement following the accident. Because of this, his friends and family stepped in to do it for him.

“Justin Sutherland was in a boating accident on July 3, 2022,” they wrote on Instagram. “He is recovering and in good spirits. At this time his family asks for privacy, but please send him positive thoughts and prayers. He will be off the radar for a little bit while he makes a full recovery, but any updates will be shared on his social media.”