Gerry Turner has reacted to Joan Vassos being announced as the first-ever The Golden Bachelorette star.

Gerry, who briefly dated Joan on his The Golden Bachelor season last year, took to Instagram on Tuesday, May 14 and posted a letter he had apparently typed to Joan following the announcement of her The Golden Bachelorette casting.


"Dear Joan, congratulations on being named the first ever Golden Bachelorette," read the letter in all capital letters.

"You will be phenomenal as the new representative of a generation. From one Golden to another... relax, breathe and enjoy."

Gerry captioned the post, "And, ABC makes History, once again!!!"

One fan joked in the comments, "Plot twist: Gerry becomes a contestant."

Another person wrote, "Such a coincidence he got a divorce before this," referring to Gerry's April 12 announcement he and wife Theresa Nist had split and decided to get a divorce following three months of marriage.

But another Instagram user commented, "Heck No!!! Not Gerry a bachelor for her. She's to classy for him!"

Joan revealed she is ready to find love during a recent episode of "The Golden Hour" podcast, and she'll have a group of men to choose from on The Golden Bachelorette, which will air on Wednesday nights at 8PM ET/PT this fall on ABC.

"I really want love. I want to have somebody in my life. I feel like life is better when you share it with somebody. I truly believe all that," Joan told the podcast's co-hosts Kathy Swarts and Susan Noles.

"As far as my heart being completely open, I think it's nine-tenths of the way there. So I think I just need to spend a little more time in... The Bachelor environment. I really want to find love, I just don't want to do the work of going on a dating website."

Joan acknowledged how she personally feels more confident than ever before.

"I like going out meeting people; I'm not super shy when it comes to that. But I feel like now, [more than ever], I deserve it. I deserve having love in my life. I feel confident to go out and seek it out. I want it!" Joan concluded.


The Golden Bachelorette will air 90-minute episodes on Wednesday nights this fall, but ABC has yet to announce an exact premiere date for the series.

When ABC aired Gerry's The Golden Bachelor season last year, each episode was only 60 minutes.

"[Joan] will bring her signature grace and charm as she embarks on a search for her next person, showcasing that everyone is worthy of more than just a second chance at love," ABC said in a statement announcing her casting.

"She is a remarkable woman whose life has been defined by her resilience, zest for adventure and strong family values. It was those family values that led to her heartbreaking decision to leave The Golden Bachelor."

Joan quit The Golden Bachelor during its October 12 episode because she had a serious family matter to attend to at home.

Joan revealed during that episode that her daughter had recently given birth via c-section and it wasn't "a normal everyday delivery at all."

Joan therefore decided she must put family first and leave The Golden Bachelor, and her exit resulted in Gerry crying and feeling deflated after he felt sparks on their one-on-one date just hours before.

"Despite that and other challenges she's faced along the way -- including the heartbreaking loss of her husband after 32 years of marriage -- [Joan] remains an embodiment of strength and grace as a devoted mother of four, grandmother of two, and school administrator, while finding solace in the music of Elton John, spending time with her dog, and cooking," ABC shared of its new Bachelorette.

More than 43 million viewers tuned in to the premiere of The Golden Bachelor, and many fans quickly fell in love with Joan, a blonde beauty, in the first several episodes.


On The Golden Bachelor: The Women Tell All, Joan got emotional when watching her journey back on the show, and she told host Jesse Palmer how she felt really bad about disappointing and hurting Gerry.

When Jesse asked Joan how her daughter and baby granddaughter were doing, Joan said everything was great at home.

"My daughter had a really serious case of postpartum depression, and she needed me. She needed her mom, and I didn't think twice. I knew I had to be there. I heard it in her voice and I could not get on that plane fast enough," Joan explained.

But Joan confessed that her goodbye conversation with Gerry was heartbreaking because he had met her dating expectations and really impressed her. Joan also said that Gerry's understanding and empathetic personality made quitting The Golden Bachelor "even worse."

Joan told Jesse that she could tell Gerry is a wonderful father and that they might've had a bright future together.

"If circumstances had been different and you stayed, you think it might've worked out with Gerry?" Jesse asked the bachelorette.

"I think we had a good chance," Joan replied.

"Gerry helped make me feel visible. He looked at me and he cared about what I was saying and he wanted to get to know me. Society makes us feel like we've had out chance, we've had our children, and now it's time to support the next generation and kind of take a backseat. And Gerry opened my heart."

Joan told The Wrap in November 2023 that she briefly considered returning to The Golden Bachelor and resuming filming once she helped her daughter because she felt like she had "unfinished business."

However, Joan soon came to realize that her daughter's mental health was still suffering and she needed to stay by her side.

Even though Joan didn't return to The Golden Bachelor, she admitted to Jesse on The Women Tell All that she "held out hope" Gerry would also quit the show and chase her down.

"I did think a couple times maybe I would come around the corner, coming home from work, and [Gerry] would be sitting on my front porch," Joan confessed.

Joan said she sometimes caught herself thinking about what could have been with Gerry.

"I went from wanting to find somebody to craving it now. It was such a good feeling and I'm working hard to find it; I'm not giving up," Joan shared.


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About The Author: Elizabeth Kwiatkowski
Elizabeth Kwiatkowski is Associate Editor of Reality TV World and has been covering the reality TV genre for more than a decade.