Grey’s Anatomy Star Jesse Williams To Exit After 12 Seasons

Published on May 7, 2021.

Grey’s Anatomy star Jesse Williams, known for his role as Dr. Jackson Avery, is exiting the show after 12 seasons!

ABC announced on Thursday that Williams will appear in his final episode, titled “Tradition,” on May 20th.

“I will forever be grateful for the boundless opportunities provided me by Shonda, the network, studio, fellow cast mates, our incredible crew, Krista, Ellen and Debbie,” Williams said in a statement obtained by PEOPLE on Thursday.

“As an actor, director and person, I have been obscenely lucky to learn so much from so many and I thank our beautiful fans, who breathe so much energy and appreciation into our shared worlds,” continued Williams.

“The experience and endurance born of creating nearly 300 hours of leading global television is a gift I’ll carry always. I am immensely proud of our work, our impact and to be moving forward with so many tools, opportunities, allies and dear friends.”

News of Williams’ exit came just days after it was announced that Jackson’s romantic interest, Dr. April Kepner played by Sarah Drew, would be returning to the show for an appearance in season 17.

Season 17 of Grey’s Anatomy has been largely focused on the ongoing global health crisis and Meredith Grey (Pompeo) struggling to battle the virus. Many former characters have returned to the show through cameos in Meredith’s dreams including fan-favorite Derek Shepherd (Patrick Dempsey), George O’Malley (T.R. Knight), and Lexie Grey (Chyler Leigh).

Grey’s Anatomy airs Thursdays at 9 p.m. ET/PT on ABC.

Grey’s Anatomy: Behind-The-Scenes Secrets

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