On Thursday's special farewell episode to Justin Chambers, Alex Karev -- one of the last original Grey's characters -- was sent off in stunning fashion when the truth about why he was never returning to Seattle finally came out. In the hour, Alex revealed in letters he wrote to select members of his inner circle that he had reunited with his former flame and ex-wife, Izzie Stevens (Katherine Heigl), and that they were raising their two 5-year-old twins, Alexis and Eli, on a horse farm in Kansas.
The unexpected revelation left many fans stunned and prompted showrunner Krista Vernoff to issue a statement, saying, "it is nearly impossible to say goodbye to Alex Karev." Now, Pompeo has broken her silence on the surprising way Alex's time on the show wrapped up, which brought his story all the way back to the beginning to his first Grey's love, calling it "the best send-off" for the beloved character.
"I say often life is hard and thank God it is because like I tell my kids... it shows us what we are made ...of how strong we really are and let’s face it... without the lows there would be no dancing it out or celebrating this incredible experience we call life," Pompeo wrote on Instagram on Friday, accompanied by a video of nostalgic Meredith and Alex moments over the years. "Thanks to our national treasure @therealdebbieallen and the writers for giving Alex Karev the best send off. Thanks to @shondarhimes for creating the most amazing character."
Pompeo explained why she felt it only made sense for Alex's arc to go full-circle.
"For me personally for Karev to go back to the beginning.... was the best possible storyline. It pays homage to those incredible first years and the incredible cast ...that created a foundation so strong that the show is still standing. So let’s not be sad," the 50-year-old actress said. "As our fearless leader DA always says let’s PULL UP and celebrate the actors the writers and the fantastic crew who make this show come to life every week. No matter what the challenge or how tired we all are in the end... you keep us going.....That is worth dancing it out over! So much love and gratitude to you all."
"There's no good time to say goodbye to a show and character that's defined so much of my life for the past 15 years," the actor said in a statement to ET. "For some time now, however, I have hoped to diversify my acting roles and career choices. And, as I turn 50 and am blessed with my remarkable, supportive wife and five wonderful children, now is that time."
"As I move on from Grey’s Anatomy, I want to thank the ABC family, Shonda Rhimes, original cast members Ellen Pompeo, Chandra Wilson and James Pickens [Jr.], and the rest of the amazing cast and crew, both past and present, and, of course, the fans for an extraordinary ride," Chambers added.