Popaholics are not only fans of Dr. Sandra Lee's work as Dr. Pimple Popper, but also grow to care about the patients they see in the videos.
One of them was known as "The Fireman," but he had not been able to see Lee in more than two years. In an emotional video posted Friday, Lee revealed that he died in May 2016.
Lee said the last time she saw the Fireman, he was not doing well, but did not reach out to his family for fear of possibly bad news. But she recently noticed a message on her Facebook page from a woman who said she was the Fireman's daughter.
In it, the woman said her father died on May 27, 2016, exactly a month after Lee posted her last video with the patient.
"I wanted to thank you for being so nice to him," the Fireman's daughter wrote. "I just wanted to tell you 'Thank you.' I watched your YouTube videos of him all the time, so I could hear his voice and see him. I'm also a fan of your videos."
The woman said her father received cards from people around the world and "they meant a lot to him." Lee said she got the woman's permission to share the message with her fans. The woman said her father, who was also a mechanic and welder, liked seeing Lee.
"I think a lot of us, myself included, may have suspected [that he died], but it's kind of like I really did not want to know for sure," Lee said. "But I am happy that he is not in any pain. I think he was in a lot of pain those last months of his life."
At the end of her video, Lee reflected on the impact her seemingly simple pimple popping videos have on viewers and the patients she features.
"How crazy is that? That somebody who has blackheads can touch so many of our lives," she said. She told her fans she thought it would really "make your day" to hear the impact her videos can have on the patients' families.
The Fireman first appeared on Lee's YouTube channel in December 2015. The video shows Lee extracting blackheads from his forehead, his nose and behind his ear. It has over 12.2 million views.
In April 2016, Lee posted another video after the Fireman had "recent surgery complications." That second video has over 4.4 million views.
On Friday, Lee paid tribute to the Fireman with another video, showing memorable scenes from the two previous ones.
Also on Friday, Lee showed how her work has changed the life of a man who suffered from rhinophyma, which made his nose puffy. The video ended with a check-in, showing his nose fully healed.
Lee started her Dr. Pimple Popper persona on Instagram in 2014, then migrated to YouTube after the videos caught on. She now has 3.5 million YouTube subscribers and her videos have racked up over 1.9 billion views. She also has 2.7 million Instagram
She has so many "Popaholics" who watch her videos that TLC is hoping they watch her upcoming series. She already starred in a TLC special in January, attracting 1.2 million viewers.
Photo credit: YouTube/Dr. Pimple Popper0comments