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Golden Bachelorette’s Joan Vassos Addresses Golden Bachelor’s Gerry Turner, Theresa Nist’s Divorce

Golden Bachelorettes Joan Vassos Addresses Golden Bachelors Gerry Turner Theresa Nists Divorce
Joan Vassos Disney/Ramona Rosales

Golden Bachelorette Joan Vassos was just as shocked as the rest of the world when Gerry Turner and Theresa Nist announced their decision to divorce.

“I was surprised. I loved watching their journey. I saw them fall in love,” Joan, 61, told CNN in an interview published on Tuesday, May 14. “I believed, just like they did, that they were the perfect couple. And I applaud that they jumped into this process with both feet and they were ready to find love.”

Joan noted that both Gerry, 72, and Theresa, 70, “knew what true love was” because they both had found it before. (Gerry’s late wife, Toni, and Theresa’s late husband, Billy, both died years before The Golden Bachelor season 1.)

“I also applaud them that when they discovered it wasn’t perfect, that they called it quits, and it’s not the end of the world,” Joan said. “And we have to let them live their journey and follow their hearts and it wasn’t right for them, so they split up.”

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Gerry and Theresa shared their decision to split during an interview with Good Morning America in April. The twosome had wed in a televised ceremony three months before. (Us Weekly broke the news that Gerry filed for divorce the same day the GMA interview aired.)

The twosome met during The Golden Bachelor season 1, where Joan was also a contestant. Joan ultimately self-eliminated from the ABC spinoff series to support her daughter, who had recently given birth.

Golden Bachelorettes Joan Vassos Addresses Golden Bachelors Gerry Turner Theresa Nists Divorce
Theresa Nist and Gerry Turner Disney/James Clark

“My daughter just had a baby and it wasn’t a normal, you know, everyday delivery, at all. Things go wrong. And even if everything went right, you need your mom,” Joan said in a confessional. “My family will always be first. Once you become a mom, you’re always a mom even when your kids are older. Nothing is more important.”

While Joan may not have found The One in Gerry, she’s more than dipping her toe in the dating pool. On Tuesday, Joan was announced as the first lead of The Golden Bachelorette — which will premiere on Wednesdays in fall 2024.

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“The secret is out!” Joan wrote via her Instagram Story at the time. “I’m honored to be #TheGoldenBachelorette.”

After the news broke, Gerry took to social media to send his well-wishes to his ex.

“Dear Joan, congratulations on being named the first ever Golden Bachelorette,” Gerry wrote via Instagram on Tuesday. “You will be phenomenal as the new representative of a generation. From one golden to another … Relax, breathe and enjoy.”

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