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General News

ABC Announces Joan Vassos as the First ‘Golden Bachelorette’

NEW YORK – ABC announced that the first ever ‘Golden Bachelorette’ is Joan Vassos, the New York Times reported on May 14, noting that “it has only been a month since the storybook ending of ‘The Golden Bachelor,’ ABC’s buzzy spinoff of ‘The Bachelor,’ featuring cast members 60 and up, got a divorce-announcement epilogue.”

The network “is giving the dating franchise another chance at love,” the Times reported, with Vassos as “the ‘Golden Bachelorette’ in a new season of the reality dating show this fall.”

“Vassos, a 61-year-old school administrator from Rockland, Maryland, was a contestant on the inaugural season of ‘The Golden Bachelor’ last year, the Times reported, adding that the “mother of four and grandmother of two… earned the affection of the series lead, Gerry Turner, after writing him a poem titled ‘I Just Hope I Don’t Vomit on Your Shoes.’”

“Vassos and Turner also bonded over the grief each had experienced after the death of a spouse,” the Times reported, noting that “she chose to leave the show during its third week because her daughter was experiencing health problems soon after giving birth.”

“In her brief time on the show, Vassos was the contestant who perhaps best articulated ABC’s stated intention for the spinoff: to put a long-overdue spotlight on older Americans,” the Times reported, adding the quote from Vassos as she left the Bachelor Mansion: “My heart maybe got a little fixed from Gerry. As you get older, you become more invisible. People don’t see you anymore. Like you’re not as significant as when you’re young.”

Vassos was married to Greek-American John Nicholas Vassos for 32 years when he passed away January 18, 2021 at the age of 59 after a two-year battle with pancreatic cancer, as noted in his obituary. He was a longtime member of St. Sophia Greek Orthodox Cathedral in Washington, DC, and had a special relationship with St. George Greek Orthodox Church in Bethesda, MD.

“Three years after his death, Vassos shared a heartfelt tribute to John on her Instagram in January 2024,” People magazine reported, adding that she posted: “He was the husband that always made me feel safe and cherished.”

“He was the parent that was always the fun one because that’s all he knew how to do…lucky kids because fun in his book was generally epic,” the post continued. “I could go on for hours, you all know that though… Honestly, I think that’s how he would want to be remembered… by not forgetting him. Please keep telling the stories, don’t worry, they don’t make me sad… let’s be honest, most of them are funny! As the Greeks say, ‘May his memory be eternal.’”

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