Bernadette Hunt, known to fans as Falcon on hit 90s TV series Gladiators, has sadly passed away from cancer at the age of 59.

The news was broken by the partner of Hunt’s sister, who posted, “It is with great sadness that I have to tell you of the death of my partner’s younger sister Bernadette Hunt. Most people will remember her as Falcon From the hit TV Show Gladiators.”

“I had the privilege to be in her company a few times & I have to say she was one of the most lovely people I have ever met. She never had a bad word to say about anyone, indeed she was always known a the nicest ‘Gladiator’ always stopping to speak & sign autographs for anyone.”

Although Falcon did not join the Gladiators line-up until the second sports-based game show’s second season in 1993, she quickly became a fan favourite, and was especially memorable for her distinctive, spiky mullett.

According to the Mirror, Hunt had originally studied ballet at the London Contemporary Ballet School. She had intended to pursue dance professionally before a back injury forced her to give it up. She later trained as an aerobics instructor.

However, Hunt then tried her hand at body-building, winning several titles in the early 90s including Miss Natural Health, Miss Novice Britain, Miss London and Home Countries and Miss South Britain.

This helped put her on the radar of the Gladiators producer. After first becoming Falcon in 1993, she proved to be one of the longest-serving Gladiators, remaining in the popular Saturday evening show until its eighth season.

We extend our deepest sympathies to Hunt’s family at this difficult time, and hope that the spirit of Falcon will live on.