“Dancing With the Stars” Judge Dead at 78

Dancing With The Stars Judge Dead at 78

(UnitedVoice.com) – In 2004, the British show “Strictly Come Dancing” premiered on television. The next year, “Dancing with the Stars” debuted on American TV. The shows paired celebrities with professional dancers, and they competed with other teams. Dancer Leonard “Len” Goodman served as a host on both shows for 12 and 17 years, respectively. Sadly, he has now passed away.

On Saturday, April 22, Goodman passed away in Kent, England, where he was in hospice. The New York Times reported that his death was caused by bone cancer. Jackie Gill, his agent, said that he’d been working until a few weeks ago. Throughout his illness, Gill said the dancer “retained his sense of humor” and managed to deal “with it with great dignity.”

A statement on the “Dancing with the Stars” Twitter account called Goodman “warm and caring” and said he “always delivered genuine guidance.”

Goodman was born on April 25, 1944, during WWII, in London. He began dancing when he was 19 years old and went on to have a wildly successful ballroom dancing career. He won the British Rising Stars, Duel of the Giants, the World Exhibition Championship, and the British Exhibition Championships four times. He also received the Carl Alan Award for his contributions to the art.

In his late 20s, he opened a dancing school known as the Goodman Dance Academy, which is still open. Bruno Tonioli, a fellow judge on the dance shows, released a statement mourning his friend’s death.

Leah Remini called Goodman a “gentleman with a great sense of humor and warmth.”

In 1972, he married his first wife, Cherry Kingston, but they divorced. He was later in a relationship with a woman named Lesley, and in 1981, they welcomed their son James William Goodman. In 2012, he married Sue Barrett, who remained his wife at the time of his death. Goodman also had two grandchildren.

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