Haitian-American model and disability advocate Mama Cax passed away on Monday, December 16, according to an Instagram post shared to her account this morning. She was 30 years old.
Though the cause of her death wasn’t stated explicitly in the post, according to Refinery29, earlier this month, Cax discovered blood clots in her leg, thigh, abdomen and near a medical filter near her lungs.
“It is with deep regret and immense sadness that we announce the passing of Cacsmy Brutus (Mama Cax),” her family wrote on Instagram, adding:
To say that Cax was a fighter would be an understatement. As a cancer survivor, she had grown accustomed to taking on life’s several challenges head on and successfully. It is with the same grit (fervor) that she fought her last days on earth.
Cax was an amputee and spoke openly about losing her leg to childhood cancer at age 14. She was known for her work to make the fashion industry more inclusive for people of color and folks with disabilities.
“I think it’s so important to show people who have physical disabilities because there are people out there who have physical disabilities who buy products and who never see themselves represented in any way, shape, or form,” she told Teen Vogue last year.
Friends and fans have taken to Twitter to express their love for Cax and support for her family:
A queen. A force. A powerhouse beauty that brought her strength to the @savagexfenty stage this year inspiring so many across the globe. Rest In Power sis ✊???????? @mama_cax pic.twitter.com/Nq43DoJZb9
— Rihanna (@rihanna) December 20, 2019
My beautiful friend was the most extraordinary role model. Mama Cax was a cancer survivor, model, amputee, and activist. She was sent home TWICE prematurely by our underfunded NHS and died in her hotel room. This happens so often now in the UK, especially to young black women. ???? pic.twitter.com/tng9DcgFNc
— Jameela Jamil ???? (@jameelajamil) December 20, 2019
Growing up on social media means that from time to time, you find yourself grieving, truly grieving, the passing of strangers. Rest in Power #MamaCax — and please know you really and truly left your mark on this world. pic.twitter.com/F4GQErnkk5
— Chinyere Ezie (@lawyergrrl) December 20, 2019
I first interviewed Mama Cax in 2016. I was struck by how she embodied so much about this shift happening in fashion, moving all of us towards something warmer, more loving, hungrier, and with more purpose. Rest in power. (cc @Gabrielle_Korn): https://t.co/wTHzpvJy5l
— Connie Wang (@conniewang) December 20, 2019
we had dinner recently, and spoke of what we’d do next. i couldn’t stop taking photos of you, you were so casually powerful. you opened doors for so many, and in doing so gave all of us a necessary breath of fresh air.
we’ll love you forever, Mama Cax. ???? pic.twitter.com/AHjDN5LyPt
— Ari Fitz (@itsarifitz) December 20, 2019