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Rachel Riley reveals heartbreaking loss

The Countdown star revealed her grandmother passed away on Thursday

Chloe Best

Rachel Riley has posted an emotional tribute to her grandmother, who passed away recently. The former Strictly Come Dancing contestant shared a childhood photo on Instagram to remember all the things she loved about her grandma, including the close bond she shared with Rachel's boyfriend, Strictly professional Pasha Kovalev.

"A few things I will remember about my grandma: A Salford dinner lady, she loved kids, especially my baby nephew Finlay. She'd never be seen without her signature lipstick. She never dyed her hair, even when it was three different colours all at once, it was definitely all natural," Rachel listed.

Rachel Riley paid tribute to her late grandmother on Instagram

She continued: "She called Pasha 'Passion' and always offered to be his dance partner (or pimp out her friend Margaret)!" Rachel revealed she would be attending her grandmother's funeral on Thursday, telling fans: "Sad to be saying goodbye to her today, but also remembering the good, the funny, and the very funny times."

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Rachel will no doubt have been supported through the difficult time by Pasha, who she has been dating for the last four years after meeting on the BBC show. However, it is unlikely that he will have been able to be by her side at the funeral, as he is currently busy in rehearsals for the second week of performances alongside current dance partner Ashley Roberts.

Rachel revealed her nan had a special bond with her boyfriend Pasha

Pasha and Rachel were paired up on Strictly in 2013, and started dating after she split from her husband. The Countdown host has since opened up about their relationship in an interview with Daily Mail's Event magazine, saying: "I was used to Essex boys growing up. Russian boys are a lot more gentlemanly and thoughtful. They will express their emotions a bit more. Even though you picture Russians as stoic, their language is really poetic."

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She also revealed that they love to dance together, adding: "Whenever we’re away or get the opportunity, Pasha takes me salsa dancing. We’ve been in Brazil, Colombia and France."

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