DWTS' Len Goodman Dead at 78: Bruno Tonioli, Carrie Ann Inaba and More Pay Tribute

Dancing With the Stars and Strictly Come Dancing judge Len Goodman has died. Read messages from his colleagues, including Bruno Tonioli, Carrie Ann Inaba and more.

By Elyse Dupre Apr 24, 2023 12:42 PMTags
Watch: Dancing With the Stars' Len Goodman Dead at 78

The ballroom has lost a legend. 

Dancing With the Stars judge Len Goodman has died.

"It is with great sadness to announce that Len Goodman has passed away peacefully, aged 78," his manager Jackie Gill said in a statement obtained by NBC News on April 24. "A much-loved husband, father and grandfather who will be sorely missed by family, friends and all who knew him." 

According to the BBC, Goodman passed away April 22 at a hospice in Kent, England, and was surrounded by his family. The news organization reported his death came after a battle with bone cancer. 

Goodman's death comes five months after the judge, who first joined Dancing With the Stars in 2005, announced his departure from the show, citing his desire to spend more time with his family in Britain. After the professional dancer and coach—who also served as a judge on the BBC program Strictly Come Dancing from 2004 to 2016—passed away, several members of the Dancing With the Stars family paid tribute, including his fellow judges.

Celebrity Deaths: 2023's Fallen Stars

"Heart broken my dear friend and partner for 19 years the one and only ballroom legend #lengoodman passed away," Bruno Tonioli wrote on Instagram April 24 alongside a throwback photo of the duo. "I will treasure the memory of our incredible adventures and hundreds of shows we did together @bbcstrictly @dancingwiththestars they will never be anyone like you we will miss you."


Added Carrie Ann Inaba, "A Dancer. A teacher. A refined gentleman. A wonderful storyteller. A special soul. A mentor. A family man. And… A treasured friend. Saying goodbye at the end of last season broke my heart. But today's news has shattered it all over again. I can't believe that you're gone." 

Sharing a video montage, Inaba called Goodman "one of a kind" and a "dear friend," going on to express her gratitude for all the good times they had. 

"And I will cherish our memories and hold them close, while I join so many others in mourning your loss," she continued. "Thank you for all that you shared with us. Your humor, your wisdom, your wit and your truth. Until we meet again…Rest In Peace Len." 

On Instagram Stories Inaba wrote, "Love you forever my friend."

Several Dancing With the Stars pros expressed their condolences as well.

"Heartbroken," Kym Johnson-Herjavec wrote on Instagram. "Heavens gates are covered in 10 paddles and mirror balls today. Nothing made you feel better than getting a 10 from Len. He was a class act with a cheeky grin and quick wit. You will be so missed. Rest In Peace sweet Len."

Added Keo Motsepe on Instagram Stories, "May your soul rest in peace. You will be missed Len. The Legend."

Former Dancing With the Stars host Tom Bergeron also honored Goodman by sharing a photo montage on social media and writing, "A Good man, indeed."


Members of the Strictly Come Dancing community paid tribute as well.

"I've just woken up to the sad news that my gorgeous colleague and dear friend Len Goodman has passed away," judge Craig Revel Horwood tweeted. "My heart and love go out to his lovely Sue and family. Len Goody Goodman is what I always called him and "It's a ten from Len & seveeeeern"will live with me forever. RIP Len."

For the latest breaking news updates, click here to download the E! News App