Gordon Ramsay responds to 'Kitchen Nightmares' suicide

Celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay has opened up about the suicide of Joseph Cerniglia, a contestant on Ramsay’s Kitchen Nightmares reality TV series. Cerniglia, 39, took his own life on Friday by jumping from NYC’s George Washington Bridge. “I was fortunate to spend time with Joe during the first season of Kitchen Nightmares,” says Ramsay in a statement. “Joe was a brilliant chef, and our thoughts go out to his family, friends and staff.”

Cerniglia is the second Ramsay series alum to commit suicide: In 2007, Hell’s Kitchen contestant Rachel Brown took her own life.


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  • etm

    How unbelievably sad that someone is in such despair that they think suicide is the only option. What sad news…

    • xyz

      Sad? Yes. But sometimes it is the only option. That is sad.

      • melissa

        suicide is never the onlhy option!!! u people need 2 wake up. there is always some1 there 2 listen & help u thru things…

      • Benny

        I unfortunately agree with xyz – it is a sad reality that sometimes suicide is indeed the only option. I’m not saying that this was true for Joe, but in general I agree that it is sometimes the only viable way out of certain situations in this vile world that we live in.

      • whatevs

        Melissa, I don’t know how old you are, but it’s naive to think that there’s always someone who will listen to you.

      • fireflystare221

        No whatevs that isn’t naive at all. There are suicide help lines that do exactly that. Listen. Sometimes even strangers will listen if you give them the chance. I’m not saying everyone is going to reach out a hand for support and guidance, but people do. I hope that if you find you need it one day people will listen to you. There is good in the world. It isn’t always apparent or exactly how you want it to be, but it exists and to believe that doesn’t make someone naive. There are always other options than suicide.

      • Tracy

        Anyone who watches Hell’s Kitchen knows that he berates contestants. Whether it’s to make for good television or not, anyone applying to be on Hell’s Kitchen should be well aware (and expect) to take some verbal abuse from Gordon Ramsay. I find his approach on Kitchen Nightmares much different and it’s clear to me at some point in every episode that Gordon Ramsay genuinely cares about helping turn that restaurant around. Is his approach a bit caustic at times, yes, but that’s no secret and people signing up for a TV show starring Gordon Ramsay can’t pretend they had no idea how he is. Suicide is a choice and Gordon Ramsay had no say in that decision.

      • James

        If you ever think about killing yourself because “it is the only option” then you also have to realize that if you are that low, it can only get better. If you’ve had the worst day, week, year of your life you have to realize that it can only get better if it is that bad.

      • Mike

        Suicide is a Permanent solution to a TEMPORARY problem. Period.

      • AMT

        It grinds me when folks say “Suicide is a permanent solution to a temporary problem” – like its some mantra. Chronic pain is not temporary, terminal illness is not temporary, being disfigured and a social outcast is not temporary. These conditions are permanent – there is no getting better. You either decide to live the rest of your life in agonizing hell, or you decide to opt out.

      • Joe

        Logically suicide is not the only option, but anyone in the suicidal frame of mind believes it is the only option. Think outside your closed boxes…

      • Ana170

        “If you ever think about killing yourself because “it is the only option” then you also have to realize that if you are that low, it can only get better.”

        It can also get a lot worse or it can stay the same. There’s no such thing as it can “only” get better.

      • greg

        melissa is right–1 Peter 5:7
        Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you.

      • Jeff

        suicide is never an option, he needed help support from someone and didn’t get it, its very sad people love you when your doing great, but where are they when your down????????????

  • Brad

    Is the implication that being a contestant contributed to the deaths??

    • mesa

      Obviously. Just one of those shocker articles.

      • James

        despite the fact that his business was thriving since Ramsey came out and helped.

  • Jeannette

    I loved that episode and his business was doing well since the show. I’m so sad for him and his family. RIP Joe.

  • Bob

    He had a family, a nice restaurant and was incredibly handsome. He must have had mental or severe fiscal issues that drove him to suicide. I really feel bad for him because he made such a great subject on the show.

    RIP Joe

  • CookingKills

    I think getting screamed at and humiliated on national television definitely has to take a toll on a person. I’m sure these people had issues before this but having to live with the long-term impact of very very public humiliation, has to make a person feel pretty bad about themselves.

    • Bob

      He was not “screamed at and humiliated on national television”. You are thinking of Hell’s Kitchen.

    • jeannette

      Obviously you never saw the show.

      • jeannette

        That was to Cooking Kills btw

  • kate

    Here’s the thing, he didn’t get screamed at. Kitchen Nightmares is a really different show from Hells Kitchen. He goes to restaruants and helps them get better. It’s a much kinder Ramsey on this show…sad the media is turning this into a blame game. Also he was on the first season, that was quite a while ago. It’s always sad to hear about someone taking their own life but it’s not fair to blame it on a TV show.

    • andrew

      you never have seen the show the first 2 seasons he did a good amount of verbal berating of the owners and chefs

      • kate

        Actually I have seen the show but thanks for coming out…it was clearly a different tone. He spent much more time trying to help people, who were clearly struggling. Also did this man not call for him. The bottom line is Ramsey and no tv show is resposible for someone commiting suicide.

  • hsur

    Ive always wanted to deck that ahole,Ive cooked in numerous kitchens and was never yelled at or verbally humiliated. Ill never understand reality shows anyway,how theyre so embarassing!

    • Hayle

      I have watched every episode of Kitchen Nightmares and think Gordon Ramsey is a great man and wasn’t the reason for Joe’s suicide. All of you who do think it’s his fault should be commited to a mental hospital too

  • @melissa

    melissa, the reason people commit suicide is because they are suffering from a disease. diseases don’t get better by talking they must be treated just like cancer must be treated. sometimes no matter how much treatment you have the disease still ‘gets you’. having been surrounded by more than one person who has felt the need to take their own life, i’ve boned up on the subject.

    • @melissa

      my bad-‘honed up on the subject’

    • Bal

      FYI, not everyone who commits suicide has a ‘disease’, as you refer to it.

      • wakeforce

        Bal is right. A devastating loss of a loved one, a relationship or a job can suddenly lead someone who never thought of suicide to kill themselves. There may be no signs of mental illness until then.

  • lrw

    the chefs are trying to show their cooking skills and Ramsey’s screaming at them and humitration people can’t it. Ramsey doing every day it breaks the person spirit.

    • B.

      man up already, geez, or don’t go on the show, and people need to take responsibility for their own life and actions

      • B.

        meaning you can’t blame his suicide on the show, or Ramsey, that’s all. Most importantly, it’s sad about this man, and best wishes to his family. But lay off Gordon, we have no idea what went on in his life other than the 2 week filming the show.

    • RK

      So 3 years later he suffers from some kind of post-Ramsey syndrome?

  • richard t sigholz

    sorry to hear the suicide hope that that don,t blame Gordon Ramsay .

  • JK

    Chef Ramsey did a good job helping Joe. Perhaps his business was failing despite his good effort to improve and he couldn’t take the pressure of what he might of perceived as failing. This is a sad reminder that one should never loose their faith, but instead be patient, trust in God and persevere. God Bless his wife, children and the rest of his family…

  • Jessica

    “Cerniglia is the second Ramsay series alum to commit suicide: In 2007, Hell’s Kitchen contestant Rachel Brown took her own life”…I would hate to have that attached to my name.

    • G.

      Don’t worry, it won’t be. Rest easy, and get off your high horse. It’s a reality show, and people that sign up for one deserve what they get, and most likely these people had problems going in that made them sign up for shows. That is becoming more and more clear. I cannot imagine the disclaimer the people need to sign these days on the shows, and how little they read it.

      • G.

        That being said, I just mean don’t bash Ramsey, I am truly sorry for the 2 people and their families, and their pain. I wish the families the best, and hope EW and media will take the page down, because I would not have known about this without EW. And I think it was only posted to implicate Gordon in some way, which is wrong, and let’s just let the families grieve. Sorry if the first post came out harsh, I didn’t mean it that way against the two that lost their lives. I meant it in a different way, and to other people. Peace to all.

  • Barry

    he is responsible for taking his own life along with that verbally abusive arrogant Ramsey

  • Nareba

    There are times when I feel hopeless and want to disconnect from the world also. But I look at my children there is so much hope and love in them. I just can’t there’s always another option. RIP Joe and my deepest sympathy to the family. realwomancentral/forthekids

  • Hope

    to the person who stated “Suicide may be the only option” this is so untrue~my Grandmother always said don’t worry about things until they happen because most of the time it will pass anyway and also God never shuts all the doors without leaving open a window~I hope this one statement helps someone it sure did come in handy many many times during my lifetime~God Bless Hope~

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