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18th Nov 2020

Gordon Ramsey pays tribute to MasterChef Junior star, Ben Watkins

“Heartbroken today losing my little mate.”

Gordon Ramsey has paid tribute to MasterChef Junior star, Ben Watkins, who has sadly passed away.

Watkins, aged 14, had been undergoing treatment during a battle with a rare form of cancer.┬áHe tragically passed away in Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago this week.

The teenager had taken part in TV series MasterChef Junior when he was just 11-years-old.

Chef Gordon Ramsey paid tribute to Watkins today, sharing a photo of the boy appearing on the show in his MasterChef apron.

“We lost a Master of the @masterchefjunior kitchen today,” he wrote.

“Ben you were an incredibly talented home cook and even stronger young man. Your young life had so many tough turns but you always persevered.

“I adored our time cooking and laughing together on set. Heartbroken today losing my little mate, sending all my love to Ben Watkins’ family with this terrible loss Gx.”

Watkins didn’t emerge victorious on the US TV series, but he did become a favourite of judges and fans alike.

The teenager was diagnosed with a soft tissue tumour soon after his 13th birthday. According to his family, he was one of six people in the world to be diagnosed with the rare cancer, Angiomatoid Fibrous Histiocytoma.

Watkin’s parents, Leila Edwards and Mike Watkins, had tragically passed away four years earlier.

A GoFundMe set up to pay for the 14-year-old’s hospital bills said that Watkins was looking forward to getting back into the kitchen and pursuing his dream of becoming an engineer.