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Heartbroken Jamie Oliver pays tribute to ‘generous, inspiring' Jock Zonfrillo
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Heartbroken Jamie Oliver pays tribute to ‘generous, inspiring' Jock Zonfrillo

“Jock will be so very missed."

Jamie Oliver has paid a heartfelt tribute to his ‘MasterChef’ Jock Zonfrillo after the former’s sudden death

“I’m in total shock to wake up to the sudden death of chef Jock Zonfrillo,” Oliver said on social media. “We had the best time working together for this year’s MasterChef, I can’t tell how good it was to work with him!”

“Jock was very generous to me with his time and spirit in the show and for that, I was really grateful. Mellisa, Andy & Jock work as the most inspiring judges and mentors and each has their very own unique view and style.”

“Jock will be so very missed, I can’t believe I’m writing this. Sending heartfelt love and condolences to all of his family, friends and his second family, the ‘MasterChef’ team and contestants xxx. Love Jamie,” he finished. 

Just hours before Zock’s passing, Oliver shared a selfie he took with him and the other ‘MasterChef’ judges, Andy Allen and Melissa Leong, to his Instagram. He has since deleted the post and uploaded the tribute photo above. 

The first episode of the latest season of ‘MasterChef Australia: Secrets & Surprises’ was set to air tonight, with Oliver appearing as a guest and Jock as a judge, but was postponed after today's news. 

‘MasterChef’s’ official social media pages broke the news of Jock’s passing earlier today. In a statement issued by MasterChef Australia's broadcaster Network Ten and their production company Endemol Shine, the Zonfrillo family revealed the Glasgow-born chef had died on Sunday.

“With completely shattered hearts and without knowing how we can possibly move through life without him, we are devastated to share that Jock passed away yesterday,” the statement reads. 

“So many words can describe him, so many stories can be told, but at this time we’re too overwhelmed to put them into words. For those who crossed his path, became his mate, or were lucky enough to be his family, keep this proud Scot in your hearts when you have your next whisky."

“We implore you to please let us grieve privately as we find a way to navigate through this and find space on the other side to celebrate our irreplaceable husband, father, brother, son and friend.”