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Ellen Pompeo announces she’s leaving Grey’s Anatomy after 19 seasons

Ellen Pompeo announces she’s leaving Grey’s Anatomy after 19 seasons

Ellen Pompeo is stepping down from her role as Dr Meredith Grey in Grey's Anatomy after 19 seasons

Ellen Pompeo has confirmed she’s leaving Grey’s Anatomy after 19 seasons on the popular medical drama, saying she feels ‘eternally grateful’ for her time as Meredith Grey.

Pompeo, 53, has starred as the titular doctor ever since the show first aired in 2005, first introduced as a surgical intern at Seattle Grace Hospital.

But she is due to make her last appearance in season 19 – the first part of which premiered last month before returning back next year after a winter break.

A recent promo for the show’s return on 23 February next year teased that Meredith would be departing Grey Sloan Memorial Hospital, with a clip showing her bittersweet ‘big last day’ at the trauma centre.

As everyone raises their glasses for a toast, Meredith tells her colleagues: "This is very thoughtful, and ridiculous."

Owen then turns to her and says: For God’s sake, Grey, will you just let us toast you?”

A recent promo clip teased Meredith's departure.

Now Pompeo has confirmed her departure from the programme in an emotional Instagram post, saying her time on the franchise has been ‘fun and iconic’.

She also promised to come ‘back and visit’, but that ‘the show must go on’.

“I am eternally grateful and humbled by the love and support you have all shown me, Meredith Grey and the show for 19 seasons!” the actor wrote.

“Through it all… none of it… would have been possible without the best fans in the world. You all are RIDERS and you all have made the ride so fun and ICONIC!!

Pompeo shared an emotional statement on Instagram.
Instagram/Ellen Pompeo

“I love you madly and appreciate you right back.

“This isn’t your first time on the rollercoaster… you know the show must go on and I’ll definitely be back to visit.”

Pompeo signed off her message with ‘a lot of love and immense gratitude’.

Creator Shonda Rhimes has also said goodbye to Pompeo and the show’s long-suffering protagonist in her own Instagram post, which featured a carousel of photos including a selfie of the pair.

Rhimes wrote: “What a wild ride these past 19 seasons have been.

Shonda Rhimes also penned her own tribute to Pompeo and the character.
Instagram/Shonda Rhimes

“None of it could have been possible without the incomparable @ellenpompeo, the one and only Meredith Grey.

“This isn’t a goodbye, it’s a see ya later! Can’t wait to see what’s in store for Ellen, Meredith and Grey Sloan Memorial.”

The love-in continued in the comments, where Pompeo responded: “Thank You Queen!!”

She added a red heart emoji and a kiss emoji.

D’aaaw, you guys!

Featured Image Credit: ABC

Topics: TV And Film