Iraq war veteran JR Martinez has won the 13th season of hit TV show Dancing With The Stars, beating out reality star Rob Kardashian and former talk show host Ricki Lake in the show’s two-night finale.
Martinez, 28, dancing with partner Karina Smirnoff, wowed the judges over the course of the 10-week competition to capture its coveted mirror ball trophy.
“You are amazing and I’m so grateful that I was able to be a part of your first mirror ball trophy,” Martinez told Smirnoff upon winning.
For their final dance, both Martinez and Kardashian performed a samba to Ricky Martin’s Shake Your Bon Bon. Although Kardashian beat Martinez by 113 points to 112 in the judges’ vote, the audience voting – which counts for half the final result – secured Martinez the glitterball trophy.
“Thank you, America, for believing in us,” Martinez said, giving it up for the fans.
Despite losing, Kardashian, who was repeatedly cited for improvement and growth over the course of the season, told reporters:
“I definitely am not sad. I won in my book.”
In addition to crowning a champion, highlights of Tuesday’s finale included performances by Lady Antebellum and appearances by this season’s former contestants including actor David Arquette, singer Chynna Phillips and activist Chaz Bono, son of singer Cher.