Justin Sutherland faces a long road to recovery after being seriously injured in a boat accident over the weekend.
Chef Handsome Hog was boating on the St. Croix River on July 3 when a wave from the ship knocked him over. According to the incident account on the GoFundMe page, Sutherland tried to grab his hat, which had exploded while driving the boat. When a wave hit, he fell into the water near the engine. The fan hit his face and arms.
Reports of his injuries included multiple cuts to his face and left arm, a broken arm and a severely broken jaw. The post said he has already had several surgeries and will need several more. Doctors say his prognosis is good, although he will be in the hospital for some time.
“He adds more personality to the face we know and love, and most importantly, his beard is intact,” the post read.
The incident came just days after Sutherland discussed a wave of planned summertime Minneapolis restaurant openings, including Northern Soul, the rooftop restaurant in downtown Ties Lounge, two Big E locations, and his new restaurants focused on egg sandwiches in hotels. Moxy.
Sutherland serves as culinary director at the recently opened Noyes & Cutler as well as executive chef at Handsome Hog, both in St. Paul.
In addition to working in restaurants, Sutherland is best known for his multiple television appearances, including hosting TruTV’s “Fast Foodies,” as a “Top Chef” contestant in Season 16, and winner of Food Network’s “Iron Chef America.”
At the time of the accident, Sutherland did not have health insurance. But it didn’t take long for the restaurant community to rally around it.
Chef Brian Ingram announced on Instagram that the Hope Breakfast Bar in St. Paul (1 S. Leech St.) is holding “Day of Hope” and will donate 100% of sales on July 7 to the Sutherland Medical Fund.
“Like many in the hospitality industry, Justin didn’t have medical insurance, which is a reason very close to my heart,” Ingram said in the post. “Justin has stood with us through some of the most difficult times in our community during the pandemic. We will stand by him during his recovery and beyond.”
The Sutherland family has pledged to donate any money raised other than for his medical needs and recovery to the non-profit organizations that Sutherland has worked with and for in the past. Almost $90,000 was raised in the first 18 hours.