“I think that this was one of the best competitions and Hannah worked her butt off. She did such a great job,” Karamo, 39, told Us Weekly exclusively on Tuesday, December 3 while kicking off the Literacy Project Fundraiser with Pizza Hut and its nonprofit partner First Book by reading his children’s book I Am Perfectly Designed to students. “I mean, everyone did such an awesome job and I mean, Hannah was perfectly designed for that dance floor and she took home the mirrorball.”
The Queer Eye star had nothing but positives to say about the former Bachelorette star, 25, who won season 28 of the dancing competition on November 25. “Yeah, we all congratulated each of the finalists and, you know, said congratulations after they won,” he said.
This season of DWTS had its ups and downs, especially when James Van Der Beek was sent home on November 18 after revealing on the show that his wife had suffered a life-threatening miscarriage. Karamo, a father himself, noted that seeing the actor go home was tough, even though he was no longer on the show at that time. He was eliminated on October 28.
“Yeah, I was heartbroken for that. But what I was proud of was James’ strength and his wife’s strength to be able to share their pain with the world because I know so many people who have experienced loss and the loss of a child. And a lot of times we feel like we need to hide that,” Karamo told Us. “And so the fact that he was open to share that was pretty amazing.”
During the show’s final episode, the Dawson’s Creek alum, 42, shared a few messages with his fans on social media and thanked them for all their support all season.
“I want to thank everybody for all the support and the love that you guys have sent my way and my family’s way. It really helps. We so appreciated hearing all the messages of support, of love,” the actor said backstage on November 25. “Some of you sharing your stories about miscarriage and some of you saying that us sharing kind of helped out in some way. We appreciate all of it. We’re just awash of gratitude. Thank you everybody for your outpouring of emotion and support for us.”
When reflecting on his elimination the Varsity Blues star admitted that going home was actually what was right for him, even if he didn’t know it then. “I’ll tell you one thing, there’s not a trophy in the world that I wouldn’t give up to have had this week with them,” Van Der Beek told Us at the DWTS finale. “As much as I didn’t understand it at the time, being home was far and away the most important thing this week.”
When it comes to his own experience on the show, Karamo, who was partnered with Jenna Johnson said, “The competition is over now and so, you know, if I could rearrange things, I would have been in the finals, but that’s not how life works. So, I’m just happy I had the experience and I went out like a champ.”
Pizza Hut and First Book’s holiday fundraiser helps to provide children with inclusive books that celebrate diversity.
Reporting by Kayley Stumpe
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