The celebrated chef and TV personality, Lesego Semenya, has passed away, allegedly from complications of Covid-19, as announced today, Monday, July 12 IOL confirms.
It is with great pain that I have to share this: Chef Lesego Semenya @LesDaChef has passed away. Please keep his family and friends in your thoughts. We have lost a huge part of our heart. We will never be whole again. R.I.P Lesego pic.twitter.com/dhr6Khfd5n
— Psychic Witch (@MizMarcee) July 12, 2021
The whole TASTE team is devastated to hear of the tragic passing of our colleague and friend, Chef Lesego Semenya aka @LesDaChef, our beloved TASTETube host and unfailing champion of heritage food.
Our thoughts are with his family and friends. We will miss you Les. RIP 💔 pic.twitter.com/9bBDNVkbmD
— wwtaste (@WWTaste) July 12, 2021
The Joburg-based chef who was 39 years-old was loved all over the country and the world. He was an-award winning chef, a master of cookbook writing that went powerfully beyond the surface. He was also a heritage-food culinary-king and someone who people connected with deeply because of his unconventional brilliance and way with words.
His food blog’s tagline perfectly captures one of the many accolades he achieved in the industry: “taking the Snobbery out of Food since 2009.”
He served an authenticity that South Africa sorely needed. As IOL writes, he had people hanging onto his every word when it came to all things food and restaurants. He also wasn’t afraid to speak his truth and discuss the struggles of black chefs in the industry either, and brought important conversations to the table. It was his charming authenticity that had people feeling so connected to the icon alongside his advice, wit and light.
He was open about his Covid-19 struggle and expressed positivity toward the turbulence on July 9.
On July 9 he tweeted:
Day 5. Still fighting this Covid demon whilst living with a comorbidity. I’m OK, loads of medication and keeping positive. Thank you to those who keep checking up on me. Dr reckons I’ve seen the worst of it now and it’s just about recovery and rest now. ♥️🙏🏾
— Lesego Semenya (@LesDaChef) July 9, 2021
The news of passing has seen many South Africans devastated, sharing their condolences, love and teachings they learned from Semenya.
— #RIPLesegoSemenya (@clarencesdb) July 12, 2021
— Kass Naidoo (@KassNaidoo) July 12, 2021
— Gia (@gloria_kamau) July 12, 2021
I just saw the news about @LesDaChef. I have no words. He was a bright light.
— Khadija Patel (@khadijapatel) July 12, 2021
@LesDaChef we loved your recipes, advice, sense of humour, books, we loved Porridge & got excited about his new buddy. We enjoyed your gardening. We cried for your Mom. We celebrated your new love. We were not ready to say goodbye! 😭 Strength to his loved ones. #RIPLesDaChef https://t.co/X6a5vxdaKa
— Ruth Cummings (@Oofie76) July 12, 2021