Holly Willoughby pays tribute to late This Morning expert

uchenna okoye
Holly Willoughby pays tribute to This Morning starKen McKay/Shutterstock

Holly Willoughby has paid tribute to former This Morning expert Uchenna Okoye after the dentist passed away at the age of 53.

Okoye’s death was announced on Friday (September 15), with her family confirming that she had passed away following a “sudden illness”.

Willoughby paid tribute to the celebrity dentist on her Instagram Story, writing: “Unbelievably sad to hear of the passing of @druchennaokoye.

uchenna okoye
Ken McKay/Shutterstock

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“We first worked together many moons ago with @oralb_uk and she was very kind to me...and then of course again, giving her advice on @this morning. Sending all my love to her family.”

Upon Okoye’s death on Friday, her family wrote in a statement (via Yahoo): “We know many of you will be devastated and shocked to see this post. We ask for your prayers and some privacy at this difficult time. We will be in touch in the coming days.”

Okoye, a mother of one, also appeared on 10 Years Younger over the years, and ran two dental practices in London alongside founding her own product line.

Willoughby also recently paid tribute to Matty Lock, a vacuum cleaner enthusiast and local Labour Party councillor who passed away at the age of 19, with the host taking to social media to share some heartfelt words.

holly willoughby
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“So shocked and saddened to hear the news today," she wrote. "Matty was a wonderful person with a true passion for what he did... my love goes out to all his friends and family at what must be a very difficult time.”

Earlier this month, Willoughby addressed accusations of a toxic workplace at This Morning, with the host saying it had been a “difficult” year for all involved following the resignation of Phillip Schofield.

“I know there's been lots of reports about things and for me personally, you know, I don't want to speak on behalf of other people, but it's a world I honestly don't recognise,” she said. “I think that we all look after each other is the honest truth.”

This Morning airs weekdays from 10am on ITV1.

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