So even Katie Thurston didn’t realize what she was offering when she said her Bachelorette finale was a “first.”
ABC chose the Washington native for season 17 after she appeared on season 25 of The Bachelor in early 2021. As a result, she met 30 candidates, including bartender John Hersey, in Palm Springs. She eliminated California in Week 2.
Blake Moynes, who appeared on The Bachelorette season 16 in 2020, joined the cast when there were 14 men left. It was during Matt James’ season that he went out to Thurston, believing they would click. Moynes received her last rose after Greg Grippo and Michael Allio quit Thurston’s top four.
The Bachelorette’s August 2021 finale included Thurston and Moynes’ proposal. While navigating their post-show future, the twosome told Us Weekly they weren’t in a hurry to settle down. So when Moynes went to work in Africa in October, she admitted to Us that they were “winging it.”
“We’re figuring it out,” he said. Not sure. It’s still new to us. Then we may work together. If not —” Thurston said backstage at Whitney Cummings’ comedic gig before trailing off.
Thurston and Moynes called it quits a week after the performance. Because their relationship wasn’t working, she told her Instagram followers the two of them “owed it to each other to move apart.”
Thurston told supporters on October 31, 2021, “Blake and I are pretty level-headed and mature, and we communicate very well.” That if this was our first six months as a couple, it wasn’t in our best interests to continue together going ahead. “
Following the divorce on November 9, 2021, Moynes acknowledged it hasn’t “been easy” for him. Us revealed Thurston’s relationship with Hersey later that month. “It’s known Katie and John became good friends post-season,” her agent said in a statement later. Their new romantic connection is exciting to them because John has been there for her through all of her life’s key transitions.
Hersey and her relationship timeline:
When Hersey came out of the limo on night one of Thurston’s season, which aired in March 2021, she stated that he was her “type.” However, by the second week, she had sent him packing.
Thurston almost ran into Hersey in May 2021 on a San Diego beach.
“John is surfing on this very beach – a rose appears in the ocean at random. ‘That’s extremely bizarre.’ The two’s mutual friend Stephen Lovegrove remembered the incident on Us’ “Here for the Right Reasons” podcast in September 2021. Then we go home, snap pics, have ice cream, and surf. Later that afternoon, John finds all these images on Katie’s account and learns he was literally 100 feet away from the Bachelorette, with whom he had just filmed this season. We didn’t find out about it for a long time.”
Thurston was also seen visiting Hersey’s pub in La Jolla on that trip. Fans speculated that she reconnected with Hersey after her season aired in summer 2021.
During all of the conjecture, Lovegrove told Us, she joked with John about how well he and Katie were doing. “And anyhow, that led to our friendship. But, indeed, the Duke’s vacation coincided with the now-infamous San Diego trip [that generated the love triangle with Alana Milne, Chris Conran, and Jessenia Cruz on Bachelor in Paradise].”
However, Hersey was always on Thurston’s side, backing her when she accused finalist Greg Grippo of gaslighting her during their dramatic August breakup.
Hersey said she was stunned by Greg’s remarks and body language during Monday’s episode. ““Watching these actions defended (and so accepted) is harmful and in the wrong direction.”
“It’s “A relationship can be a terrific friend to some while being damaging to others. Friendship cannot justify defending someone’s actions.”
On December 2, they walked the red carpet at Stephen Lovegrove’s First Noelle Ball. They first shared their preparations on Instagram Stories. They kissed for the cameras at the ball.
“I had no idea what this year would bring. And I’m glad for the circumstances that brought us together “On his girlfriend’s birthday, Hersey waxed lyrical on Instagram “We wouldn’t be where we are now if you hadn’t dumped me on national television. I’m so glad I didn’t make the wrong choice in falling for you. Happy birthday, beautiful girl!!”
“I sure do adore you,” Thurston commented.
“My heart danced in a new way. No one else was there. Some mention Cupid or first love. I didn’t understand until that night “Thurston shared a poem on Instagram for the couple’s first Valentine’s Day. “Your eyes and smile enlivened my soul. You ignited my world, leaving me entire. You found a rose at sea. I believe we were always meant to be.”
“It’s hard to believe that one year has passed since this evening. Unlike @thekatiethurston, I would have imagined I could be here right now “Hersey said besides a photo of himself leaving The Bachelorette, referencing Thurston’s prior comments. “Thank you to everyone who has accompanied me on this adventure. My gratitude for being surrounded by such a great group. I can’t wait to share my adventures with you all!”
His girlfriend commented, “Sorry to our bachelor brackets. We owe you.”
Katie captioned an Instagram image from the first day of Coachella, “Feelin like a kid this weekend.”