Officials Rule Drowning Death Of Obama Family Chef An 'Accident'

Officials Say Drowning Death Of Obama Family Chef Tafari Campbell Was An ‘Accident’

Massachusetts officials have ruled Tafari Campbell‘s death an accident. Campbell was most known for being a personal chef to the Obama family–which started during their time in The White House and continued after.

RELATED: Tafari Campbell, Barack Obama’s Chef, Drowns Near Former President’s Martha’s Vineyard Home

A spokesperson for the Massachusetts Executive Office of Public Safety and Security confirmed the ruling, per CNN. The 45-year-old reportedly drowned in a Martha’s Vineyard pond while paddleboarding.

Massachusetts State Police announced their joint agency search for Campbell on July 23. Authorities had received a call that evening about a paddleboarder who went under the water and didn’t resurface. The website update says Campbell “appeared to briefly struggle to stay on the surface,” per the caller.

As previously reported, police located Campbell’s body about 100 feet from the pond’s shoreline. He was approximately eight feet underwater without a life vest.

At this time, there are no additional developments regarding Campbell’s death. 

Wife Of Chef & Obama Family React To Tafari Campbell’s Passing

After the news first broke, Campbell’s wife, Sherise Campbell, released a brief message via her bakery business, Sweet Sage’s Instagram page. She shared a photo of her chef husband standing in a kitchen near appetizers.

“My heart is broken. My life and our family’s life is forever changed. Please pray for me and our families as I deal with the loss of my husband,” Sherise wrote.

Meanwhile, Barack and Michelle Obama called Tafari Campbel a “beloved part” of their family. Adding that his loss has left their hearts “broken.”

As mentioned, Campbell first met the presidential family while working at The White House. After the Obama Administration ended, Campbell joined the family as their personal chef.

“When we first met him, he was a talented sous chef at the White House – creative and passionate about food, and its ability to bring people together. In the years that followed, we got to know him as a warm, fun, extraordinarily kind person who made all of our lives a little brighter. When we were getting ready to leave the White House, we asked Tafari to stay with us, and he generously agreed. He’s been part of our lives ever since,” the Obamas said, per AP.

Police did not indicate whether Campbell was specifically visiting the Obamas’ Martha’s Vineyard home or staying elsewhere in the area when he died. However, they made it clear that the former president and his wife “were not present at the residence at the time of the accident.” 


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