Obama’s Personal Chef Drowns In Pond Near Their Multi-Million Dollar Home: Reports

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Brianna Lyman News and Commentary Writer
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Editor’s note: The headlines and copy in this story have been updated in light of new information regarding the missing paddleboarder’s identity and the ongoing investigation. 

Authorities have identified the body of the missing paddleboarder found near former President Barack Obama’s Martha’s Vineyard mansion as the former first family’s personal chef, according to multiple reports.

Authorities discovered the body of 45-year-old Tafari Campbell on Monday, the Associated Press (AP) reported, citing the Massachusetts State Police (MSP).

MSP divers recovered the deceased’s body from Edgartown Great Pond after Massachusetts Environmental Police Officers deployed a “side-scan sonar from a boat,” according to a press release from the state police.

The incident unfolded Sunday night when Campbell struggled to stay afloat on the surface of the water before going under and not resurfacing, AP reported, citing a “fellow paddleboarder.” (RELATED: Rushing Water Sweeps Away Four Boys Near Dam During Birthday Fishing Trip, Two Die)

A call went to police from the address of Obama’s mansion, Daily Mail reported.

Campbell’s body was found roughly 100 feet from shore at 10 a.m. Monday and nearly eight feet below the surface, according to the MSP press release.

The Obamas expressed their sadness over Campbell’s death, saying he was a “beloved part of our family,” AP reported.

“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,” the couple said. “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,” the Obama’s said in a statement, according to ABC News.

Campbell began working as the Obama’s private chef after they departed the White House.

“He’s been part of our lives ever since, and our hearts are broken that he’s gone. Today we join everyone who knew and loved Tafari — especially his wife Sherise and their twin boys, Xavier and Savin — in grieving the loss of a truly wonderful man,” the statement continued, according to ABC.

The Obama’s purchased the $11.75 million mansion back in 2019. The seven-bedroom home is nearly 7,000 square feet and has a swimming pool, a boathouse and a private beach, according to Daily Mail.