Alexandra Burke has paid an emotional tribute to her late mother, Melissa Bell. Taking to her Instagram page this week, the Strictly star revealed she was missing her mum after confirming her engagement to Josh Ginnelly. "If I had one wish..," she said alongside one throwback picture, while also posting a heartfelt quote which read: "I miss you. My mind knows that you are in a better place where there is no pain. You are at peace.
Alexandra Burke posted a lovely throwback of her mum Melissa Bell
"I understand that, I just wish I could explain it to my heart. There is an empty space in it that nothing will ever fill. I grieve, but I know my tears are for me. We will be together again. Until then, my love will always be with you." The 29-year-old added the caption: "I love and miss you Mummy." Fans immediately rushed to offer words of support, with one writing: "I'm sure she was a star and shined as brightly as you do, and she still does wherever she is with pride for you. Stay strong and treasure the memories." Another said: "Beautiful words. There will come a time when this won’t hurt as much - no time limit on it but it will come, trust me."
Melissa, who was a former lead vocalist in Grammy Award-winning band Soul II Soul, passed away after a nine-year battle with kidney failure, which was brought on by diabetes. Alexandra had just signed up for Strictly, in which she was partnered up with Gorka Márquez and eventually went on to become a finalist. During an interview with HELLO!, Alexandra admitted that her mother was her motivation to keep her going in the competition. "My mum raised me to be the best me I can be and keep strong," the star said. "She's my motivation to get out of bed and to go to the dance studios to rehearse for ten hours. You never know how long you will last, so to still be a part of it is a dream, an absolute dream. It would mean everything to me to get to the end."