'RuPaul's Drag Race' Star Sahara Davenport Died of Heart Failure
Sahara Davenport, Whose Real Name Was Antoine Ashley, Competed on Season Two, While His Boyfriend, Manila Luzon, Will Star on This Month's RuPaul's Drag Race: All-Stars Season
RuPaul's Drag Race star Sahara Davenport, a.k.a. Antoine Ashley, died Monday and the cause was heart failure.
Davenport, who was 27, competed on the second season of RuPaul's Drag Race, where he was eliminated in the season's sixth episode.
His longtime boyfriend, RuPaul's Drag Race season three contestant Manila Luzon (a.k.a. Karl Westerberg), will compete in the new season, RuPaul's Drag Race: All-Stars, which premieres on Logo on Oct. 22.
In a statement on the Logo website, Davenport's mother said, "I thank God for giving me an angel Antoine Ashley to share with the rest of the world. My family and I would like to thank everyone for their condolences and support. We know that our Angel is now dancing in heaven. May God bless each and every one."
Westerberg wrote, "Antoine lived to entertain the world as Sahara Davenport, and the world was in awe over his extreme talent. But his heart is what made us all fall in love with him. To me he will always be my best friend, my hero, my Diva, and I have always considered myself more than lucky to have him be forever a part of my life. Thank you, hon, for bringing so much beauty to all of us. Your legacy lives on in me and all of us you've touched."
Davenport, who was a classically-trained dancer, began his drag career as a student at Southern Methodist University.
He moved to New York City after earning his degree in dance, and appeared on One Life to Live, Judge Karen and in David Guetta and Chris Willis' music video "Gettin' Over You."
RuPaul tweeted about Davenport's death earlier this week.
"Shocked & heartbroken over @SaharaDavenport. Never occurred to me that we'd ever lose one of my girls. I see them as immortal."