Gabby’s ‘Bachelorette’ Finalist Erich Addresses Blackface Photo

Gabby Windey's 'Bachelorette' Finalist Erich Schwer Apologizes After Blackface Photo Resurfaces

Gabby Windey, Erich Schwer
ABC/Craig Sjodin; ABC/Ricky Middlesworth

Bachelor Nation prepares for the discovery of whether Gabby Windey Erich SchwerTogether, we can build a better future. BacheloretteSeason 19 finalist apologises for his past

“I wholeheartedly apologize for the insensitive photo of me in Blackface from my high school yearbook that has been circulating,” the 29-year-old New Jersey native began on Thursday, September 8, via Instagram. “What I thought at the time was a representation of my love for Jimi Hendrix, was nothing but ignorance. I was naïve to the hurtful implications of my actions to the Black community and those closest to me, and will forever regret my offensive and damaging behavior.”

He concluded: “I am deeply ashamed by my actions and understand that my apology is only the first step in taking accountability.”

Erich’s statement comes shortly after the yearbook photo of him in blackface surfaced on social media. He is Gabby’s only remaining suitor as Johnny DePhillipo Jason Alabaster were eliminated during their respective overnight dates because they weren’t ready to propose. Erich is set to meet the ICU nurse’s family in the two-part finale and will ultimately decide if he wants to get on one knee.

Nate Mitchell, who also competed for Gabby’s affections, reacted to Erich’s apology on Thursday.

Gabby Windey's 'Bachelorette' Finalist Erich Schwer Apologizes After Blackface Photo Resurfaces

Gabby Windey and Erich Schwer.
ABC/Craig Sjodin

“Appreciate you taking ownership bro, I can’t absolve you of this but I can attest to the man I’ve met and you have been nothing less than someone who I’d consider a friend,” he wrote. “You aren’t the first person I’ve befriended with a similar past and the difference is not having an attitude of willful ignorance. Your school posting this information to a year book and accepting it as a sign of support tells me that your peers and faculty have not helped you to overcome this problem. Children do fall prey to their environment time and again. Continue to grow and learn from your past and I’ll continue to support you and provide advice should you need/ask for it.”

Logan Palmer added: “Takes a man to talk about his mistakes. guys who have met you know what kind of person you’ve been.”

Gabby, on the other hand, has not addressed the matter. On Thursday, Gabby confirmed that she is scheduled to appear in season 19. Dancing With the StarsWith a professional partner Val Chmerkovskiy.

“I think it’ll be a different [experience],” she told reporters. “I feel like I’m lucky enough to kind of have momentum. I think I have grown so much in the last two seasons, that now I can really challenge myself in another way. I think there is a lot of, like, actual vulnerability that comes with this position because nobody knows what you’re doing — plus, you have to perform live. It was good kind of building blocks for this, but I think it’s gonna be different in a good way.”