Gretchen Rossi Announces Tragic Death Of Her Stepson, Grayson

"The Real Housewives of Orange County" star Gretchen Rossi is mourning a tragic loss. The reality star announced on February 7 that her stepson Grayson Alexander died at age 22 after a long road with brain cancer. In an emotional post, Rossi remembered Grayson as an "angel on this earth" and "an incredible warrior" amid his health struggles. "We are beyond devastated and heartbroken over the loss of Gray. Grayson Arroyo-Smiley was such a special human being," she wrote. "He fought everyday through his pain and discomfort to find joy in the smallest of things ... He was a true beacon of light and hope."

Rossi has become a mother figure to Grayson since she and his father, Slade Smiley, started dating in 2009. The pair now shares a daughter, Skylar Gray, whom they welcomed in 2019 after multiple rounds of in vitro fertilization, per People. They named her after Grayson. "We are forever grateful for the many lessons learned from this little man, and will miss his beautiful spirit immensely," said Rossi of her stepson. "This isn't goodbye but rather see you soon little man ... We love you Grayson. You will forever be in our hearts."

Grayson's mother, Michelle Arroyo, also confirmed the news and opened up about her son's last days in a heartbreaking post on social media. 

Michelle Arroyo said Grayson's death was very unexpected

Michelle Arroyo said her son Grayson's death came as a complete shock, as he seemed to be "doing much better" since being discharged from the hospital last month. According to her post, Grayson had been facing fevers, infection, and low potassium in the last few months, all of which "likely took a toll on my sweet boy's heart" and caused his death. "His heart stopped here at home and I performed chest compressions to get it going until the paramedics arrived and took over," wrote Arroyo, who confirmed that Grayson died on the evening of February 5. "When he left for the hospital he looked good and was breathing on his own, but his heart gave out again at the hospital." 

According to a support website launched by Arroyo, Grayson was diagnosed with brain cancer in 2006, just three days after he turned 6 years old. Arroyo said that while she is still "in shock and going through the motions," she is comforted by the thought that Grayson is now "playing cards with Gramma and playing Trouble with our beloved Diane." She ended on a positive note, adding, "His dog Mo is right at his side as he never left him." Our hearts go out to Grayson's family. May he rest in peace.