Drag Race stars lead tributes to Cherry Valentine who has died aged 28

23 September 2022, 13:42

Drag Race UK Cherry Valentine
Drag Race UK Cherry Valentine. Picture: BBC/World Of Wonder
Woodrow Whyte

By Woodrow Whyte

RIP Cherry Valentine

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RuPaul's Drag Race stars and fans are paying tribute to Cherry Valentine who has passed away aged 28.

The news was announced this morning (Sept 23) in a statement by Cherry's family.

Cherry, who's real name was George Ward, appeared on the second season of Drag Race UK in 2020 and went on to front the BBC documentary Gypsy Queen And Proud. Prior to Drag Race, Cherry was qualified as a mental health nurse and returned to the NHS to help with the vaccination drive during the coronavirus pandemic.

In a statement, Cherry's family said:

"It is with the most heart-wrenching and deepest sadness to inform you that our George - Cherry Valentine - has tragically passed away

"This will come as a profound shock to most people and we understand there is no easy way for this to be announced.

"As his family, we are still processing his death and our lives will never be the same," they added.

"We understand how much he is loved and how many lives he has inspired and touched. All we ask is for your patience and your prayers in this time. We love you Georgie."

RuPaul tweeted a tribute to Cherry, saying she was a "bright star and a lovely person"

Cherry's DRUK season 2 castmate Tayce said she was "a force, a touchstone, one of the sweetest, kindest and caring people I’ve ever met."

Drag Race UK queen Cheryl Hole paid her respects to Cherry, calling her a "beautiful person" and "incredible queen".

Ginny Lemon said she was "devastated" by the news of her passing.

Another castmate, Ellie Diamond, said she was "in shock".

Joe Black said they would "cherish the times we had together"

Tia Kofi said she was "completely devastated" and shared a link to a Book of Condolence for Cherry.

Bimini said that Cherry's "patience and kindness was their superpower"

More Drag Race queens and fans are sharing their shock at the news on social media.

RIP Cherry Valentine.