Love Island Frontrunners Josh Goldstein and Shannon St. Clair Quit Show After Death of His Sister

Love Island's only exclusive couple, Josh Goldstein and Shannon St. Clair, left the CBS show together after Josh learned his sister had passed away: "I just need to be home with my family."

By Lindsay Weinberg Aug 07, 2021 1:31 AMTags

Tragedy has struck the Love Island villa, leaving the reality show's frontrunners heartbroken. 

Josh Goldstein and Shannon St. Clair, who were the strongest couple after remaining together since day one of season three, announced they were leaving the villa during the Aug. 5 episode.

The islanders woke up to find Josh and Shannon's bed empty. The couple walked in the bedroom, holding hands, to share the sad news that Josh's sister had died over night. 

"I just want to tell you guys that me and Shannon are going home today," Josh, 24, told his fellow CBS contestants. "Unfortunately, my sister passed away last night." He added, "Yeah, I just got word," seemingly from producers who informed him of her death. (The islanders film Love Island non-stop in Hawaii, typically without access to their cell phones and social media.)

The Sun reports that a Massachusetts coroner's office confirmed his sister Lindsey died Aug. 4, but no cause of death was revealed.

Love Island USA Season 3: Meet the Cast

On air, Josh paid tribute to his sister. "She was an unbelievable person," he told his co-stars. "She was the reason I'm here, the reason I found Shannon and met all you guys. It's unexpected, but she lived an unbelievable life." 

He continued, "I just need to be home with my family right now to support them. I just want to let you guys know that I'm so grateful to have met all of you, consider you all my best friends. We're going to see each other again. This isn't it."

Sara Mally/CBS

The baseball player said he appreciates "the support and the friendships and the fun times and the laughs" that he has experienced over the past 22 episodes. "It's been unbelievable and an experience that I'll never forget," Josh noted.

The islanders quietly gathered around the pair to hug them goodbye, with Cash Proudfoot telling them, "I'm so sorry."

The Love Island USA Twitter account wrote on Aug. 5, "We send our love and condolences to Josh and his family from all of us at Love Island. [heart emoji]."

Shannon and Josh were the only couple in the villa to go exclusive, after he asked her to be his girlfriend on the Aug. 4 episode, during their waterfall ziplining date. 

After the couple's departure, castmates expressed their sympathy during one-on-one interviews. Through tears, Kyra Lizama reflected, "It's absolutely heartbreaking to see Josh and Shannon leave."

Cash added, "I couldn't even imagine what he's going through, what he's feeling." 

Jeremy Hershberg said, "I'm just kind of in shock right now. He's obviously going to be missed in here, and I just can't wait to see him when I get out and be there for him."

Earlier this week, contestant Leslie Golden suddenly exited the dating show as well. The influencer later wrote on her Instagram Story that she left after doing something "a little illegal."