‘Drag Race UK’ Star Cherry Valentine Has Died at Age 28
George Ward, who appeared on RuPaul’s Drag Race UK as Cherry Valentine, has sadly passed away at age 28. Ward’s family released a statement announcing his death, and the Drag Race UK Instagram posted a tribute on Friday.
RuPaul’s Drag Race UK Star Cherry Valentine Dies at 28
“It is with the most heart wrenching and deepest sadness to inform you that our George — Cherry Valentine — has tragically passed away,” reads a statement from Ward’s family released by his agent. “This will come as a profound shock to most people & we understand there is no easy way for this to be announced.”
The statement goes on to say that Ward’s family is “still processing his death and our lives will never be the same.” They continued, “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 30 November 1993-18 September 2022.”
In an Instagram post, Drag Race UK shared several photos of Ward on the show as Cherry and wrote, “We are heartbroken that Cherry has passed away. She was a kind soul who brought joy and a distinctive laugh to everyone she met. She brought flair, verve and charm to #DragRaceUK, we will miss her so deeply.”
Ward Competed on Season 2 of the Show
Ward competed on Drag Race UK as Cherry Valentine in Season 2, which aired in 2021. He placed 12th in the competition and later appeared in the BBC documentary Cherry Valentine: Gypsy Queen and Proud, where he discussed his upbringing in the Traveller community.
Before Drag Race, Ward worked as a mental health nurse, and he also worked in vaccination units during the Covid-19 pandemic. According to the BBC, Ward once described drag as a “lifeline” during the pandemic.
Ward said of participating in Drag Race, “I just wanted to go on and show wherever you come from, whoever you are, you can do whatever makes you happy.”