One of the stars of TLC’s My 600-Lb. Life has died of a heart attack.
Robert Buchel, 41, of New Jersey, was the focus of Wednesday night’s episode and lost nearly 200 pounds after moving in with his fiancé, Kathryn Lemanski, who lived in Houston. He was 842 pounds and had hoped to undergo life-saving weight loss surgery.
However, The New York Daily News reports Buchel became addicted to painkillers after lymphedema removal surgery and that he tore out his stitches following the surgery to try to receive more painkillers.
Buchel passed away on Nov. 15, 2017.
Lemanski described her pain in a Facebook post.
“I wish I could say that my heart was broken or even shattered, but in reality, it is just gone. My heart died along with him,” said Lemanski.
TLC issued a statement to PEOPLE:
We are grateful to his family who were gracious enough to let us continue to share his brave story with our viewers. Our thoughts and prayers are with them at this difficult time.
Buchel was the first person to die during the show’s filming. My 600-Lb. Life is currently in its sixth season.