Former ‘My 600 Lb. Life’ Season 5 Star James King Has Passed Away

James King, who appeared on Season 5 of TLC’s My 600 Lb. Life, passed away on Friday.

According to his obituary, James died in Nashville at the age of 49. While his cause of death has not been revealed, James had dealt with various health issues in the past, including cirrhosis of the liver and sepsis.

James, who lived in Paducah, Kentucky, is survived by his wife, Lisa (who appeared on the show with him), their six children and 19 grandchildren. According to his obituary, James’ funeral arrangements will be private. 

James during his 2017 episode…

James’ episode was memorable because, at the time of filming, James was the heaviest person that had ever been featured on the show, weighing in initially at 791 lbs. During a “Where Are They Now?” episode the show’s medical adviser, Dr. Now, removed him from the weight loss program in Month 11 because he felt that James had failed to make enough progress to be able to have weight loss surgery.

“Hopefully he’ll work to get under 600 lbs, and I’ll continue him on this program,” Dr. Now said during the episode. “But, until then, James is done.” 

At the end of one of his update episodes, James vowed to lose half of his body weight and get back into Dr. Now’s program but, unfortunately, that never happened. At one point, James weighed in at 843 lbs.

In a tweet posted on Monday, TLC– the network that airs ‘My 600 lb. Life’– confirmed James’ death and expressed its condolences to his family. 

“TLC was deeply saddened by the loss of James King, who shared his weight-loss journey on My 600lb Life,” TLC tweeted. “Our thoughts and prayers are with his family at this difficult time.”

Tragically, James is the seventh ‘My 600 Lb. Life’ cast member to pass away, with Season 1’s Henry Foots being the show’s first loss in 2013. Rob Buchel of Season 6 passed away in 2017 from a heart attack and the following year, L.B. Bonner, also of Season 6, committed suicide. That same month, Lisa Fleming of Season 3 passed away from causes unrelated to her weight.

Lisa Fleming during her Season 3 episode.

In February 2019, Sean Milliken, who appeared on Season 4, died after suffering complications from an infection at the age of 29. That month also saw the loss of Season 7’s Kelly Mason, who died of heart failure during her ‘My 600 Lb. Life’ episode. 

James’s unfortunate passing comes as ‘My 600 Lb. Life’ production company Megalomedia faces multiple lawsuits from former stars, including one from L.B.’s family for the production company’s role in his 2018 death. 

Lawsuits have also been filed by David Bolton (Season 6), Maja Radanovic (Season 7), Gina Krasley (Season 8), Dottie Perkins (Season 4) Jeanna Covey (Season 7) and, as of this weekend, Nicole Lewis (Season 5). 

Megalomedia has denied the claims made in the lawsuits. 

RELATED STORY: Another Lawsuit! Nicole Lewis Becomes the Seventh “My 600 Lb. Life” Star to Sue Megalomedia: Accuses Show’s Production Company of Fraud 

(Photos: TLC; Instagram) 

16 Comments

  1. 19 grandkids at 49. wtf is wrong with people. Sounds like they were as bad at family planning as they were at meal planning. He’s a classic example of person that takes no responsibility in life not even with the most basic things and now he’s dead way too young and with 6 kids that learn that same kind irresponsibility and are clearly practicing it themselves.


    1. I remember him. He refused to follow the program. Dr. Now tried so hard to help me. Both James and his wife were in denial. He was addicted to food and she was his food dealer.

      She always fed him fatty foods. I blame her 100 percent. Dr. Now was very mad at her.

      He had sepsis before and I am surprised he lasted this long.

      I am sorry he died, but he could not give up his addiction and his wife was his enabler.

      The judge needs to dismiss all the lawsuits these people have filed.

      So many people on Dr. Now’s waiting list.


      1. I don’t see why the judge should dismiss cases. People would never have filmed when they knew they would only get a tip from TLC and a debt.
        I always assumed TLC paid for everything for these people and was giving poor people a chance to get healthy.


      2. He also had liver cirrhosis. Liver cirrhosis and sepsis can kill you no matter what your weight is. That’s how my best friend, my dad passed when I was a teenager and he wasn’t overweight and ate healthy and exercised. He also didn’t drink. It’s a horrible way to die.


  2. I’m not understanding how TLC is even remotely responsible for a morbidly obese person’s death unless they pumped him full of fatty food for decades and chained him to a bed. No grounds for a lawsuit.

    Heart disease is still the #1 killer. Usually theres diabetes and chronic kidney disease that go along with cardiovascular health.

    Its unfortunate James wasnt able to stick with healthy habits and get his weight loss surgery. I used to have a coworker who lost 80 lbs then went on to have weight loss surgery. She got a Y membership and moved around in the pool and tried drinking more water and doing what the Dr recommended with a healthy diet.


    1. When you click and read, you will see L.B’s family certainly has grounds.
      He died because he didn’t have to money to see a counselor and TLC only offered him one measly session. Bill collectors were pounding on his door because TLC did not pay his bills as promised. He reached out to TLC several times but they did zip. They gave him a filming schedule that was too much for him at that point, that’s what they did. He didn’t die because he was overweight, he died because he was desperate and killed himself.


      1. Were the promises for the bills being paid in the contract? How much did he get paid to film? Obviously LB was full of issues prior to even being on the show, why didnt he get counseling before?

        You can get a lot of counseling for $250 per month, inpatient psych is generally necessary for suicidal intent. His family is going to step in to sue after hes deceased but where were they before? At what point are you responsible for your own health and well-being?

        I’m not a TLC fan, but I think his family is out for a payday.


      2. If you say it was TLC’s fault and that they should of given him counselling, then where the hell was his family? What were they doing? Were they getting him into counselling or just waiting until he died to blame it on someone else? They should of been doing everything they could to get him in sessions. They are programs that will help with payments. I don’t see why this is TLC’s fault. You can blame it on the fact that he was morbidly obese, which was his own doing. Suicide is awful, let the man Rest In Peace now


  3. Really sad, but inevitable. I know eating disorders come in all shapes and sizes, but at a certain point, a person is either willing to get help or willing to die. James was the latter and Lisa was his accomplice.
    He had the best help in the world but refused to acknowledge that he had a problem.

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