Spoilers for season 19 of Grey’s Anatomy follow.
Maybe her endless stream of misfortune will finally cease. After many, many, many traumatic experiences, Meredith Grey is officially escaping the Grey Sloan Memorial Hospital. In a clip shared on Good Morning America of her final episode on February 23, Meredith walks through the hospital halls with her three kids, telling Derek and Ellis to give gifts to their old day-care teachers. “Do you remember where you’re going?” Meredith asks. “Mom, I’m not a baby,” Derek responds. “Same, mom,” Ellis adds. Okay … but they are kind of too young to walk through this dangerous show on their own, in our opinion. Meredith is basically Last of Us–ing these kids — getting them out of the inherent danger that exists in Grey’s Anatomy’s Seattle. If those kids make it through the trip, that’s a success.
Ellen Pompeo, who has played the Grey’s Anatomy character for more than 400 episodes, confirmed she was leaving to fans on Instagram on November 17, 2022. “I love you madly and appreciate you right back,” she wrote. “This isn’t your first time on the rollercoaster … you know the show must go on and I’ll definitely be back to visit.”
Deadline previously reported that Pompeo will appear as a core cast member for the last time when the show returns from hiatus on February 23’s episode “I’ll Follow the Sun.” A preview that aired during season 19’s fall finale showed that Meredith is leaving Seattle, with her co-workers throwing her a good-bye party. In the 30-second clip, Meredith seems pretty cheerful about her self-described “big last day!” And why shouldn’t she be happy to leave? Her life in Seattle has literally gone up in flames. As revealed earlier in the season, Meredith will now move to Boston to research a cure for Alzheimer’s.
According to Deadline, Pompeo will continue to executive-produce and narrate episodes for this season of the ABC medical drama. She is also expected to return for an appearance in the season-19 finale. And as Pompeo herself hinted in her Instagram post, we might still see Meredith again after that, just not as a main character. Not to worry, though! Grey’s Anatomy has already recruited several interns to drive the plot forward. Hopefully they won’t have to face quite as many brushes with death as Meredith did.
This post has been updated throughout.