Former Bachelorette contestant Hunter Montgomery has celebrated his 15th year of being sober.
The fitness enthusiast from Season 17 of The Bachelorette posted photos of friends and family celebrating the 15-year milestone. Among the group were several familiar faces from Katie Thurston’s season, including the Bachelorette herself.
Hunter celebrated with Katie and other contestants
Along with the cuddly photo of the dynamic duos, Hunter also posted more photos from the sobriety celebration that featured other contestants from Katie’s season, such as Thomas Jacobs, Brendan Quinn, and Mike Planeta.
Other shots from the series included one of a decorative cake with “AA” and “15” written on it and captured moments of Hunter dancing with loved ones and getting emotional over his accomplishment.
“Last week, I celebrated a milestone in my recovery that I will never forget – 15 years sober,” Hunter wrote in the caption.
“Throughout this journey, I have met and grown to love so many people, from so many different walks of life,” he continued. “The past few years haven’t been comfortable, or easy, but the experiences they have brought me cannot be replaced. A special thank you to my friends and family, both old and new, for supporting me before, during, and after I made the decision to fight the disease of addiction.”
Hunter also thanked everybody in his life who made it possible for him to reach the milestone.
“This particular celebration was one I will never forget. Mom, Sissy, and Pop- thank you for never giving up on me, and for fighting for me. Thank you Daniella, for going above and beyond to make the weekend special, and unforgettable-I love you. Thank you to those who joined the celebration, and for those of you that couldn’t make it, your support and continuous love for me means the world. Cheers to 15 more years of growth, love, and serenity.”
Many of those in the Bachelor and Bachelorette “family” rushed to Hunter’s comment section to show their support – including Katie herself.
“So proud of you! It’s apparent you are surrounded by so much love and support,” she wrote.
Hunter’s open struggle with previous opiates drug abuse
During his time on social media, Hunter has been transparent and honest about his decision to seek help after his addiction to opiates.
With the words “sober” and “mental health enthusiast” written in both his Instagram and TikTok bios, the former contestant has shown how important his sobriety is when it comes to his identity.
In a post from July of last year, Hunter went into depth about his struggles and offered his advice to anyone who may be in need.
“In March, I celebrated 14 years of sobriety from a fatal drug addiction to opiates,” he wrote. “I was as hopeless and tortured as they come. I am blessed to have had an incredible program, a stellar support system, and one damn good higher power that allowed me to be pulled from the black hole that is addiction, and go on to live an incredible life.”
Hunter has also taken to TikTok to share his abuse with opiates in a more lighthearted way.
He participated in one of the app’s many trends and changed the lyrics of the sound to fit his situation – “I wasn’t always crazy until I met this b***h named Carolyn, a lot of you might actually know her, her real name’s OPIATES. Hello, everybody my name is Hunter Montgomery. I am 14.5 years clean and sober!”
As Hunter said, here’s to 15 more years of growth, love, and serenity for the former contestant.
The Bachelorette premieres Monday, July 11, on ABC.