I'm always more than happy to see Season 19 champion Alfonso Ribeiro, but where is Tom Bergeron on Dancing With The Stars? The beloved host is absent from the October 5th episode for family reasons — Bergeron's father is ill and he's chosen to be at his bedside rather than the dance floor this week. After Sunday night's episode, Bergeron shared on Twitter that he'll miss the show to be with his beloved dad who he noted has given him "a lifetime of support". Fans offered an outpouring of well wishes, and Bergeron tweeted his appreciation the next day, noting that he'll share the kind words with his father. Although he didn't disclose the exact nature of his dad's illness, it's serious enough for him to make an emergency trip back east and we send our best wishes to Bergeron and his family.
It certainly feels a little strange to watch Dancing With The Stars without our usual host, but Ribeiro is a great substitute. Fans everywhere were ecstatic when he returned to the show last week as a guest judge, so he seems like a natural choice to step in as host this week. "[Tom] has been here all these years for us, so I'm happy to be here for him," Ribeiro said as he kicked off his hosting duties for the evening.
Erin Andrews also addressed Bergeron's absence immediately, telling the audience that he was back on the East Coast to be there for his family. "We are thinking of you and we love you so much," she said.
Not only did Bergeron leave the dancers and viewers in great hands with Ribeiro, but he absolutely made the right choice by putting his family first — it's certainly something many of us can relate to and it illustrates that he's a great family man as well as a fabulous host.
See below for Bergeron's sweet words about his dad, and an adorable old photo of father and son: