The Biggest Loser's Damien Gurganious Dead at 38

Reality star suffered from a sudden onset of a rare autoimmune disorder that caused bleeding in his brain

By Bruna Nessif Dec 04, 2014 9:54 PMTags
Damien Gurganious, The Biggest LoserChris Haston/NBC

Tragic news has struck The Biggest Loser family.

Damien Gurganious, who competed on the popular reality show during season 7, died on Nov. 24 after suffering from a sudden onset of a rare autoimmune disorder that caused bleeding in his brain. He was 38 years old.

"He was a pillar of his family, an amazing son, brother, cousin and uncle," his family told Us Weekly, in a statement. "He was an incredible husband and father to his 2-year-old daughter, Giselle. He was an inspiration and a mentor to so many. His love for his family and friends was immense."

NBC released the following statement to E! News, "We were deeply saddened to hear of Damien Gurganious' passing.  Our thoughts and prayers are with Damien's wife and daughter, Nicole and Giselle, as well as both of their families during this difficult time."

NBC Photo: Chris Haston

Damien's wife, Nicole Brewer, reportedly paid tribute to her husband on Facebook.

"As most of you know, I never post on social media. So, it is highly ironic and deeply sad that my first true post is to inform you of the tragic loss of my beloved husband, Damien Gurganious," she wrote on the private page.

"Damien suffered from the sudden onset of a rare autoimmune disorder, Idiopathic Thrombocytopenic Purpura (ITP), which caused inoperable bleeding in his brain. Damien passed away on Monday, November 24, 2014."

Damien and Nicole, who were engaged at the time, competed together on the second cycle of The Biggest Loser: Couples in January 2009, and were eliminated in the third week.

Parris Whittingham Photography

They proceeded to tie the knot in August of that year at the Renaissance of Astoria in Queens, New York.

By the time of their nuptials, the pair, who met three years prior in a water aerobics class, had lost a combined total of more than 200 pounds since the beginning of their weighty run on the NBC reality show.

Guests included fellow Losers Carla Triplett, Jerry and Estella Hayes and Adam and Stacey Capers.

The Biggest Loser is set to air an "in memoriam" card following next week's episode on Thursday, Dec. 11, at 8 p.m. EST on NBC. In the meantime, friends of Gurganious have set up "The Damien Gurganious Family Fund" website for those who'd like to help.