The Tragic and Triumphant Story of Destinee LaShaee, the First Trans Star of My 600-lb Life

Destinee LaShaee was a reality star who inspired millions of people with her incredible weight-loss journey and her courage to live as her true self. She was the first transgender person to be featured on TLC’s My 600-lb Life, a show that documents the struggles and successes of morbidly obese individuals. But behind her smile and determination, there was a dark side that few knew about. She battled with depression and suicidal thoughts for years and tragically passed away at the age of 31.

How did Destinee cope with the challenges of being trans and overweight? And what impact did she have on the trans community and the world? These are some of the questions we will address in this biography of Destinee LaShaee.

Dr. Nowzaradan and late reality TV star Destinee LaShaee

How Faith, Determination, and Positivity Helped Destinee LaShaee Overcome Challenges and Lose Weight

Destinee LaShaee, who amazed many with her amazing transformation after losing weight, was not only a reality TV star but also an influencer. She lost almost 500 pounds in three years, going from 628 lbs in 2018 to 207 lbs in 2021. She shared her transformation on Instagram, where she posted photos of her before and after, along with motivational messages and gratitude to God and her sister.

However, her journey was not easy. She had to overcome many challenges, such as mental health issues, homelessness, and the death of her sister. She opened up about her struggles on Facebook in 2020, where she wrote a heartfelt post about how she learned to stay positive and focus on her goals. She said that she put her problems aside and worked hard to achieve her dreams. She said that she became stronger and more confident and that she did not care about what others thought of her.

She also encouraged others who might be going through similar difficulties to never give up and seek help if needed. She wrote:

“Please never give up you are strong and you are beautiful at any size and any gender be your true self walk your truth n watch how strong n powerful you’ll be”.

She revealed that she had to start from scratch after losing everything, but that she was proof that anyone can overcome anything with faith and determination. She thanked God and her sister for being her angels and supporting her. She wrote:

“I’m beyond blessed and I thank God and my baby sus Destiny Compton for never giving up on me”.

She also expressed her pride in her accomplishment, saying that she told the show that she was going to be one of the biggest success stories they ever saw. She wrote:

“How it Started Vs How it’s Going. Almost 500 pounds lost I’ve couldn’t have been more proud of myself for this accomplishment”.

From Matthew to Destinee: A Trans Woman’s Struggle with Weight, Depression, and Grief

Destinee Lashaee was born Matthew Brock Ventress on July 11, 1990, in Alexandria, Louisiana, USA. She was born to a teenage mother while her father rejected her. She was put in foster care at a young age where she longed for love and acceptance. She also never felt comfortable in her own skin. She found solace in food, but it also made her weight soar. By the time she was nine, she weighed 150 pounds and weighed an astonishing 350 pounds at 15.

She realized she was different from other boys, and at 18, she courageously came out as gay. However, she did not receive the support she hoped for, and some of her family members ridiculed and rejected her. She fell into depression, and food became her only escape. She decided to live as her true self, and transitioned to a trans woman at 22. But by then, her weight had reached over 400 pounds, and she battled with her health and self-esteem.

Destinee’s life was shattered when she lost her younger brother Anthony Tyler Ventress on November 11, 2016. He died from a blood clot, after a minor surgery. 

“Losing my brother, Anthony was the greatest pain I ever felt… If he had not died like he did, then I wouldn’t have ended up like this. So I can’t deny there are issues, I have to address what the pain I have from his death,” she said.

She was there for his funeral and would visit his grave memorial in Louisiana. She wished she could see him one last time, and hug him.

“I didn’t know how to cope with the grief. But I’m getting to a better place. But that doesn’t mean the pain of not having him in my life will ever go away. And I wish I could somehow see him one last time. He was taken so suddenly. You know, I wish that I could just get a hug,” she said.

Following the death Destiny struggled to cope with the grief and suffered from gender dysphoria and emotional distress. However, she also sought help from doctors.

My 600-lb life 

Destinee had struggled with her weight, gender identity, and mental health issues since childhood. She had also experienced trauma and loss, such as the death of her brother Anthony, who died in her arms from an aneurysm caused by a blood clot after a minor surgery. She also had a dream: to shed the excess weight that burdened her. She knew she needed a miracle, and she found one in Dr. Nowzaradan, the legendary surgeon who could transform lives with his scalpel. She decided to take a leap of faith and join the reality show MY 600 lb Life, where she would share her story with the world as the first transgender person on the show. She appeared in 2019, in season 7 episode 10, titled Destinee’s Story. She weighed 668 pounds, but she was determined to change her destiny.

On the show, Destinee opened up about her depression and pain, and how food was the only thing that gave her comfort. She also expressed her desire to transition completely and live as a woman. She said:

“I feel like all I’m constantly doing is just trying to escape all my depression and pain at this point. And food is the only thing I have to turn to to do that. But the thing that is saving me every day is also what is destroying my life now to the point where I can feel it killing me.”

Destinee realized that her situation was at a breaking point and that she needed to get help before it was too late. She said:

“I know, there is just no way I’m going to survive for a lot longer, because my body can’t take getting any bigger, and I’ve already let it. […] I need to be able to lose this weight, or they’re going to be burying me next because I don’t think I can live until next year being this big. At this rate, I give myself a couple months, and that’s not the future I should be facing before I’ve hardly even had a chance to live my life.”

With the guidance and support of Dr. Now, Destinee underwent gastric sleeve surgery and started to lose weight. She said:

“So as impossible and hopeless as it seems to me to try and change, and give up eating like I do, I’m ready to try and find a way before it’s too late. Because if I don’t, then I know I’m about to die. So I have to at least try.”

By the end of her episode, Destinee had lost 229 pounds and weighed 440 pounds. She continued to lose weight after the show and reached 207 pounds in 2021. She also had several skin removal surgeries and received therapy for her mental and emotional well-being. However, she was not happy with the way the show treated her. She sued the production company Megalomedia in 2020 for negligence, fraud, and emotional abuse. She alleged that they did not pay for her medical expenses, forced her to shave her beard, and exploited her trauma for ratings. She demanded more than $1 million in damages. She was not the only one who sued the company, as several other cast members also accused them of endangering and mistreating them.

A Sudden and Mysterious Death

Destinee’s life was a remarkable journey of transformation and resilience. She lost her younger brother Anthony, who was born on October 10, 1992, and died on November 11, 2016. She also lost her sister, Destiny Arionna Compton, who was born on January 19, 2001, and died February 7, 2021. She faced homelessness and financial struggles. But she never gave up on her dreams. She moved across the country to start anew and underwent a successful weight loss surgery. She also embraced her true identity as a trans woman of color, and became the first trans star of My 600-Lb. Life. She was a role model for many people who followed her story and admired her spirit. Sadly, her health deteriorated in early 2022, and she passed away on February 8, 2022. Her brother, Wayne Compton, confirmed the tragic news on Facebook, where he shared his sorrow and remorse. The cause of her death remains unknown, but some of her fans and friends suspect that her mental health may have been a factor.

Destinee left behind a legacy of courage and hope, which she expressed in one of her Instagram posts:

“My prayer for someone struggling in any way is that you keep fighting, know you’re beautiful, you’re strong, and you can do and be anything you want and dream. Dreaming is free, love is free, and most importantly, God is free. Living my life with so much pain for so long, I’ve come to realize that God makes no mistakes. I’m grateful for my journey and all I’ve been through. I don’t regret a single moment. Love you all.”

Destinee Lashaee Family

Destinee Lashaee was the firstborn of four children, but she had to say goodbye to two of them too soon. Her siblings, Anthony and Destiny, passed away before her, leaving her with only one brother, Wayne. Her mother Chasity and sister Destiny, were her pillars of strength and support, especially when she appeared on the show. Her father’s life was shrouded in mystery, but her mother’s love was evident.

Wayne, her only surviving brother, also admired and appreciated their parents for their resilience and courage. He often wrote heartfelt messages for them on special occasions, expressing his gratitude and love. For example, on Mother’s Day in 2022, he wrote:

“You are the most beautiful and strongest woman I know. You have buried three of your children, and I have seen the pain in your eyes, the cracks in your heart, and the depths of your despair. But you never gave up on life, on me, or on yourself. You are my superhero, not the ones I see on TV, but the one who saves me every day. You deserve this day and every day after. I love you forever.”

For Father’s Day on June 16, 2022, he wrote:

“You are a man of honor and generosity. You did not have to welcome a single pregnant mother of three into your life, but you did. You did not have to take the responsibility of another man, but you did. You did not have to care for and raise another man’s child like your own, but you did. You are a man who would do anything for his family, and you have done so much for me. You are a man who shaped me into the man I am today. HAPPY FATHER’S DAY to Wayne Compton Sr. I love you OG.”

Destinee’s other surviving family members are not well-known, and their relationship with her is unclear. Also, Destinee Lashaee was not married and was also not known to be involved in a romantic relationship with anyone. She was of mixed ethnicity, as her mother was white and her father was black.

Wiki/Bio Facts of Destinee LaShaee

Full nameDestinee LaShaee
Birth nameMatthew Ventress
Date of birthJuly 11, 1990
Place of birthAlexandria, Louisiana, USA
Date of deathFebruary 8, 2022
Place of deathHouston, Texas, USA
Cause of deathUnknown
MotherChasity Compton
StepfatherWayne Compton Sr.
SiblingsWayne Compton (brother), Destiny Compton (sister, deceased), Anthony Tyler Ventress
TV showMy 600-Lb. Life (season 7, episode 10)
Weight at the show668 lbs.
Weight loss after the show207 lbs in 2021
Zodiac signCancer
Marital StatusUnmarried
Relationship StatusSingle

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