It’s a sad day at Facebook, as it mourns the loss of its chef who passed away in a motorcycle accident.
“Josef was a Facebook legend and institution,” CEO Mark Zuckerberg said in a post on his own Facebook , this morning.
Zuckerberg wrote: This morning Josef Desimone, our executive chef, was involved in a motorcycle accident and I’m sorry to report that Josef has passed away. Josef was a Facebook legend and institution. “Chef Josef” joined us in 2008 and built our culinary from a handful of employees in a single café into a global team with dozens of world class restaurants. He never compromised on quality while maintaining total attention to detail. Josef played an incredibly important role in defining our during those first years and right up to the . Away from Facebook, Josef was just as energetic and driven. Almost every weekend he was volunteering with veterans’ organizations, hosting firefighter breakfasts or supporting some other valuable cause. He had a strong belief in giving back more in life than he took, and it shows in all the people who mourn him today.
We will find a way to permanently honor Josef’s legacy at Facebook soon. For now, let’s remember and celebrate the passing of a great friend, devoted mentor and inspirational leader
Details about the motorcycle accident weren’t immediately available. But more than 200 Facebook employees and other friends had added their own condolences to Zuckerberg’s post Monday evening. Many of them recalled encounters with the chef or his cooking, describing him as energetic and passionate about food and as someone who liked to and offer encouragement to Facebook employees.
“Wherever Josef was, everything was not only delicious but filled with joy and a love of life,” Sheryl Sandberg, the company’s chief operating officer, said in a Facebook post. Sandberg said she first met Desimone when he cooked at , where she worked before moving to Facebook.
Desimone attended culinary school in Charleston, S.C., and worked at several restaurants, including the Cafe de la Presse at the Trident Hotel in San Francisco, where he was executive chef before joining Google, according to a 2008 interview in the magazine Fast Company. He Joined Facebook from Google.