Kate Chastain, the chief stewardess on Bravo’s hit TV show “Below Deck,” has stated that she is leaving the series after six seasons.
Chastain made the announcement on her Instagram page after Bravo aired a reunion show for the “Below Deck” cast.
“After many months of reflection and internal discussions, I have chosen to make a transition this year in starting to carve out a progressive new land-based role,” she wrote. “I intend to step back as a senior member of the Below Deck Family and work to become financially independent while continuing to fully support His Majesty Andy Cohen.”
The language of Chastain’s Instagram post is a clear reference to that used by Prince Harry and Meghan Markle when they explained their semi-split from the British royal family.
In January, the royal couple said they wanted to serve a “progressive new role” in Buckingham Palace and that one way of doing so was to become “financially independent.”
For good measure, Chastain referred to Bravo late-night host Andy Cohen as “His Majesty Andy Cohen.”
Chastain has been a fixture on “Below Deck” since joining the cast in 2014 for the show’s second season. She was the source of a lot of the show’s drama and oftentimes clashed with her co-stars.
Toward the end of the last season she revealed that the show was taking a toll on her.
“Personally, this has been a very challenging season for me. I’m going to go spend a week alone in a resort and relax,” she said. “Then, head back to Florida, pack up my life, and move to New York. I’m scared to move to New York, but I was also scared to start yachting, and I think I’m ready for a new adventure.”
News of Chastain’s departure probably won’t come as too-big a shock to fans of the show, who watched her quit on the spot following a dispute with co-star Ashton Pienaar, only to return the next day.
At the Season 7 reunion show, Chastain told The Daily Dish that she had to get off the boat to clear her head.
“I quit that night because I just needed to get off the boat and away from the situation,” she said. “But of course I came back because I would never leave my crew or Captain Lee without a chief stew for the rest of the season.”
Chastain received a flood of comments from her hundreds of thousands of Instagram followers.
“You will good wherever you land!!! Best wishes to you on your next journey. Keep us posted!!” one fan wrote.
Another wrote: “You are my absolute FAVORITE crew member; the show will not be the same without you.”
Others indicated that she was the only reason they watched “Below Deck.”
“You will be DEEPLY MISSED. I think I’ll have to quit watching now. Good luck and best wishes.”