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‘DWTS’ Judge Derek Hough Calls Len Goodman’s Death a ‘Huge Shock’

Len Goodman and Derek Hough on 'Dancing With the Stars' season 31Derek Hough via Instagram

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Derek Hough recently opened up about the death of his fellow Dancing with the Stars judge Len Goodman. Hough called it a “huge shock,” saying he wasn’t aware of the extent of Goodman’s health issues.

Derek Hough Talks About Len Goodman’s Death

Goodman passed away last month at the age of 78, after a battle with bone cancer. During a recent appearance on the podcast Whine Down with Jana Kramer, Hough said he was aware that Goodman was “unwell,” but “didn’t know the extent” of his illness, adding that it was “a huge shock to all of us.”

“I feel incredibly emotional and sad about it,” Hough said, according to People. “And then at the same time, I feel so grateful that the last season that we shared together… I really savored the moments I spent with him and we were playful with each other and we had these one on one conversations.”

The dancer also shared that Goodman gave him a parting gift when he retired as a DWTS judge last year — a large framed photo of Goodman himself, with a handwritten message.

“It was so beautiful, but also like, inappropriate humor. Like, funny,” Hough explained. “It was a hilarious thing he wrote as well. And it was signed by him… I was just so touched and moved by that. Just thinking how our lives were so intertwined.”


Hough Will Pay Tribute to Goodman on His Tour

Hough recently announced the dates for his upcoming Symphony of Dance tour. He told Jana Kramer that he’ll “without a doubt” be paying tribute to Goodman during the tour.

“I think not only just for us, but I think honestly for the audience,” Hough said. “You know, I think that a lot of the audience that will come to the show will also also in a way [be] mourning this guy that they’ve watched for 20 years on TV.”

Hough said Goodman’s co-stars and friends have been sharing “countless tears and phone calls” since his death and talking about “how much we just love the guy and how lucky we are and how lucky we were to spend as much time with him as we did.”

“I just keep thinking back and some of these memories and these moments,” Hough said, “and just thinking again, just how fortunate we were to have had him for so long on the show, at least, but he certainly went far too soon in life.”

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