Justin Sutherland opens up about July boating accident, GoFundMe

Celebrity chef Justin Sutherland still can’t eat or see clearly following his July boating accident, but he says he’s in good spirits.

Driving the news: Sutherland — known for Twin Cities restaurants Handsome Hog and Northern Soul, among others — has opened up about the gruesome accident on the St. Croix River in a series of recent media interviews.

The “Top Chef” alum was knocked off a boat and fell into the propeller, suffering severe injuries to his head and arm.

Between the lines: A GoFundMe campaign created by Sutherland’s friends and family after the accident raised more than $275,000 to help cover his medical bills, leading some to question why the restaurateur didn’t have health insurance.

What he’s saying: “Before I knew the extent of the accident, I was a little angry — I didn’t want to ask people for money. Then they showed me a mirror, and I realized I definitely needed a GoFundMe,” Sutherland told Axios.

  • In a Tuesday interview with WCCO, he said he “felt self-insured” before the accident because he had been able to pay for previous medical expenses out of pocket.

What’s next: All the money will go toward his medical bills, he confirmed, and the fundraiser will close at the end of the month.

  • Sutherland said he now has health insurance.

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