Cherry Valentine, known for appearing on RuPaul’s Drag Race UK, has passed away, Valentine, born George Ward, was 28-years-old. His family released a statement via BBC.
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. 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.
Valentine died on Sept. 18. His cause of death hasn’t been revealed.
Cherry Valentine hailed from Darlington, England. They were introduced to the drag world while attending Lancaster University.
“I went to Manchester for a couple of nights out and thought: ‘This is crazy, this is what I want to do’. That’s when Cherry was born,” he told the BBC. : “Cherry Valentine is everything. She is glamour, she is a club kid, she’s dark, she’s gothic, she’s a dancer, she’s flippy. Look at me, I am a queen. I’m a high fashion queen. I look fierce, and my body is hourglass perfect.”
They hit the drag scene in 2016 and competed on RuPaul’s Drag Race UK in 2019. They appeared on the second season and was eliminated on the second episode.
Before rising to fame on Drag Race, Valentine worked as a mental health nurse. After the pandemic hit, they went back to his career, their obituary read.
“It was a weird contrast to go from competing in the Olympics of drag … to the heart of a global pandemic,” Ward said. “Yet the alter ego provided a welcome escape from the pressures. “I would come home from a crazy shift and just slap a face on and feel my fantasy and pick that back up, so it’s really helped.”