STRICTLY Come Dancing fans were left in tears this evening as the BBC One show paid moving tribute to Caroline Flack in their winners' special.
The show reflected on the series' past champions – reliving some of the most jaw-dropping dances from the years.
However, the episode couldn't finish without honouring their 2014 winner Caroline, who tragically took her own life in February of this year at the age of 40.
Discussing Strictly winners, host Claudia Winkleman said: "There is one who stands out among them all.
"In 2014 she became the first celebrity to receive a perfect 40 for every single performance in the final."
Tess Daly added: "She lit up the Strictly ballroom every single week, it is of course Caroline Flack."
The show's judges, dancers, and stars then shared their memories of Caroline over a moving montage of her best moments on the programme.
Janette Manrara fought back tears as she reflected on the Love Island presenter being "one of the best dancers we've ever had".
She continued: "I'm just so happy that she was able to pick up that Glitterball, and win it – she was amazing."
Judge Bruno Tonioli added: "We will never forget her, we love you by the way."
Caroline's professional partner Pasha Kovalev shared: "We saw how she transformed into that beautiful dancer – a dancer with a big heart on her sleeve."
The show replayed some of Caroline's most heart-wrenching performances, including her moving routine to a cover of Robbie Williams' Angels – which her friend Iain Stirling had shared to his socials after news of the star's death broke this year.
The episode ended with the TV favourite's photo flashing onto the screen alongside the message: "In loving memory of Caroline Flack."
It was all too much for viewers at home, who flocked to Twitter to share their emotional reaction to the touching scenes.
One said: "Sat here sobbing at the tribute to Caroline Flack on #strictly She was a beautiful dancer and an equally beautiful person."
Another wrote: "Absolutely in bits after watching that beautiful tribute to Caroline Flack on @bbcstrictly . I loved how Janette spoke so lovingly of her".
A third tweeted: "That was a beautiful tribute on @bbcstrictly for Caroline Flack. It’s still hard to believe that she’s no longer with us."
YOU’RE NOT ALONE
EVERY 90 minutes in the UK a life is lost to suicide.
It doesn't discriminate, touching the lives of people in every corner of society – from the homeless and unemployed to builders and doctors, reality stars and footballers.
It's the biggest killer of people under the age of 35, more deadly than cancer and car crashes.
And men are three times more likely to take their own life than women.
Yet it's rarely spoken of, a taboo that threatens to continue its deadly rampage unless we all stop and take notice, now.
That is why The Sun launched the You're Not Alone campaign.
The aim is that by sharing practical advice, raising awareness and breaking down the barriers people face when talking about their mental health, we can all do our bit to help save lives.
Let's all vow to ask for help when we need it, and listen out for others… You're Not Alone.
If you, or anyone you know, needs help dealing with mental health problems, the following organisations provide support:
- CALM, www.thecalmzone.net, 0800 585 858
- Heads Together, www.headstogether.org.uk
- Mind, www.mind.org.uk, 0300 123 3393
- Papyrus, www.papyrus-uk.org, 0800 068 41 41
- Samaritans, www.samaritans.org, 116 123
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