Strictly star Shirley Ballas
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Strictly judge Shirley Ballas ‘heartbroken’ as she pays tribute to brother 18 years after his death

The Strictly star lost her beloved brother in 2003

Strictly Come Dancing star Shirley Ballas has paid a touching tribute to her late brother David.

The 61-year-old television judge marked the “day of mourning” on social media yesterday (December 5), alongside a series of photos of David.

Shirley lost her beloved brother when he took his own life in 2003 at the age of 44 after battling depression.

Strictly star Shirley Ballas pays tribute

Shirley posted a string of photos of herself and David on Instagram.

In the caption, the Strictly star went on to share a touching message for her late brother.

She penned: “A sad day of reflection, a day of mourning the loss of a loved one from 18 years ago today. Waking up on the 5th of December all those years ago I can still feel the shock of the news run through my body, a cold and chilling feeling of disbelief.

Darling David I miss you very very much

“Darling David I miss you very very much. You were my anchor, my guider, my brother, my go to when things got tough and as for those bear hugs I can only dream about them now.

“There is not a day goes by that I don’t think about you and all the times I got to spend with you.”

Shirley continued: “Family to you was everything. A fierce and protective brother, son and father. My mind has been all over the place this week remembering all those good and bad times and of course what could have been.

Strictly star Shirley Ballas
Strictly star Shirley Ballas paid a touching tribute to her late brother David (Credit: SplashNews.com)

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“A life lost that in my opinion could have been saved if we had of been more educated and understood more about communicating feelings of how we felt. Forgive me for being so uneducated.

“Mental Health is key, kindness and understanding is so important in todays society.”

Shirley went on to mention David’s daughter Mary Ann, her mum Audrey and her son Mark.

‘It breaks my heart to write this’

She concluded: “We miss you with ever single breath we take, keep resting in peace my dear beloved brother till we meet again.

“It breaks my heart to write this, but I know you are always watching over us where ever you are. You are so loved David.”

Shirley’s fellow Strictly stars rushed to show their support.

Shirley Ballas on Strictly
Shirley has previously spoken about her brother (Credit: BBC)

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Claudia Winkleman said: “Sending so much love xxx.”

John Whaite added: “So much love to you and your family.”

Johannes Radebe posted: “Sending love.”

What has Shirley said about her brother?

Shirley previously opened up about Mark during an appearance on Loose Women.

In November last year, she told the panel: “When David died I didn’t know anything at all in mental health. I think I was so wrapped up in my career. We spoke on the phone regularly and he helped raise my son – but it was just a very difficult time.

“Now I know a lot about mental health, if I could go back I believe he would still be here today, education is key, talking is key.”

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