On Sunday, news broke among the drag community that artist and RuPaul’s Drag Race UK alum Cherry Valentine had died. The announcement shocked fans and fellow performers everywhere.
“It is with the deepest sadness and greatest heartache that we announce the passing of our belove George - Cherry Valentine,” said a statement 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. As his family, we are still processing his death and our lives will never be the same.”
The statement 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 at this time. We love you Georgie 30 November 1993-18 September 2022.”
Almost immediately after the news broke, tributes to the late queen began popping up across multiple social media platforms.
One of the first figures to pay homage to Cherry was host RuPaul. The drag legend took to Twitter to pay his respects.
Additionally, fellow judge Michelle Visage penned a heartfelt message about the season 2 queen.
“You were one of a kind with a laugh as big as your heart. This is truly heartbreaking. Rest peacefully, superstar.”
Other messages came from fellow Drag Race queens.
Completely devastated and shook by the news about our friend Cherry. She was extremely kind, generous and talented. 🍒❤️— Tia Kofi (@TiaKofi) September 23, 2022
Please share your memories in the Book of Condelence and contribute to the fundraiser for her vigil here - https://t.co/2IlBcE4xiY pic.twitter.com/kCRrchBY5i
So very sad to hear of the passing of Cherry Valentine. You were a healer, what a beautiful thing to be. Sending love to family, friends and community grieving the loss of this beautiful person. Rest In Peace 🕊🕯— Scarlet Envy (@ScarletEnvyNYC) September 23, 2022
Good morning everyone!— Kerri Colby (@kerricolby) September 27, 2022
I wanted to share my early thoughts.
I still haven’t fully processed Cherry valentine’s passing, I find it so sad and tragic. I think young death is just a very traumatizing topic to me. I try to have a positive approach to everything. But here I am sad.
One tribute, in particular, came from fellow season 2 contestant Tayce. Tayce performed a rendition of “Memory” from Cats, as part of the closing number of the final show in her “Assassination Tour."
The song that the pair emotionally lipsynced to against one another on Drag Race UK.
such a beautiful tribute, cherry would love it <3 pic.twitter.com/kgM2OAdPhT— molls ☂︎ (@doIIastore) September 26, 2022
While Cherry was not performing, She was working as a registered nurse—even stepping away from drag in 2020 to help during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Earlier this year, the late queen starred in her very own documentary, “Cherry Valentine: Gypsy Queen and Proud,” in which he spoke about leaving the traveler community after being rejected for coming out as gay at 18.Drag Society today.