Charlie Watkins, who was on Saturday's episode, committed suicide in March
Though Take Me Out is often one of the funniest and most lighthearted programmes on TV, the most recent episode took on a more sombre tone than usual, as it paid tribute to a contestant who has died since filming the episode.
Charlie Watkins was one of the men to come down the ‘love lift’ in Saturday’s edition (22nd April) of the show, in hopes of scoring a date to take to the island paradise of Fernandos.
However, the university student sadly took his own life in March 2017 at age 22 – and show host Paddy McGuinness wrote a message in tribute to him.
Taking to Twitter before the programme was broadcast, Paddy informed fans and viewers of the show that Charlie had died, and dedicated the episode to him:
Tonight’s Take Me Out is in memory of Charlie. A fantastic lad who I’m sure will be greatly missed by his wonderful friends & family. RIP
The tweet garnered many messages of condolence toCharlie’s family and friends, and was retweeted by host of sister show Take Me Out: The Gossip, Mark Wright.
A spokesperson from production company Thames said: ‘It is with great sadness that we have learnt of the tragic news regarding Charlie. Our thoughts and best wishes go to his family and friends. We ask that you respect the family’s privacy at this time.’
The episode showed Charlie putting himself forward as an eligible bachelor for the thirty single ladies, before he eventually selected Jo-Tara as his date.
His tragic death announcement in The Telegraph reads: ‘Charlie beloved son to Tim and the late Sarah Watkins and twin brother to Harry, tragically taken from us on Monday 13 March.’
In a statement to Mirror Online, Charlie’s family confirmed that his death was a result of him never being able to recover from the passing of his mother at age nine:
‘We have lost a very special young man who sadly never recovered from the tragic loss of his mother when he was only nine years old.
‘Tragically this is another example of the mental health issues suffered by young people today as highlighted by the Heads Together campaign supported by the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry.’
The amount of online tributes alone make it clear that he is greatly missed. Now sends its sympathies to Charlie’s loved ones.