Len Goodman, long-time lead judge of “Dancing with the Stars,” has “passed away peacefully,”
Goodman was “a much loved husband, father and grandfather who will be sorely missed by family, friends and all who knew him,” a statement per his agent Jackie Gill read.
Goodman had been diagnosed with bone cancer. He was 78.
The legendary dancer and television personality is survived by his wife Sue Goodman, as well as his son James William Goodman.
A former professional ballroom dancer and British champion, Goodman served as head judge on “Strictly Come Dancing” for 12 years from its launch on the BBC in 2004. He left the show in 2016. He began his stint on “Dancing with the Stars” in 2005.
Known for his cheeky one-liners and tough criticism, Goodman was endearing and beloved.
Fellow judge Bruno Tonioli shared a touching tribute to his friend on Instagram Monday morning.
“Heart broken my dear friend and partner for 19 years the one and only ballroom legend #lengoodman passed away I will treasure the memory of our incredible adventures and hundreds of shows we did together @bbcstrictly @dancingwiththestars they will never be anyone like you we will miss you,” he wrote, along with several heart emojis.
During season 31 this past fall, Goodman announced he would be retiring from the show with the intention of spending more time with his family.
Speaking of his decision to retire, Goodman said last year, “Doing a live show you have to be at the top of your game and quick to react. And as one gets older, then things start to get more challenging,” Goodman told People Magazine.
“I will miss the California sunshine, working with my fellow judges and the camaraderie with everyone on the show. I’ll miss seeing the celebrities developing into dancers and I will miss being part of one of the most successful shows on TV.”
Originally posted on Fox News
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