We're warning you now that SPOILERS FOR 'GREY'S ANATOMY' feature in the article below...

Obviously the US TV broadcast of season 17 of 'Grey's Anatomy' is much further ahead than us here in Ireland.

That means that viewers of the show on that side of the pond learned in this week's episode that a beloved cast member is departing the series.

The character's pending exit was revealed in last night's (Thursday, 6 May) episode, titled "Look Up Child."

The actor's very last episode, "Tradition", airs in a couple of weeks on May 20th.

So, here's the big reveal - the character Jackson Avery is checking out of 'Grey's Anatomy' as actor Jesse Williams departs the show having starred on it for 12 seasons.

Over the last few years, Williams has branched out beyond acting, directing episodes of 'Grey's Anatomy' and Disney+ series 'Rebel'. He also produced the Oscar-winning short film 'Two Distant Strangers'.

To give Jackson Avery a satisfying conclusion, April Kepner (played by Sarah Drew) made a return to this week's 'Grey's Anatomy'.

In "Look Up Child", Jackson visits April, as well as his father Robert (Eric Roberts), to explain that he has decided to take over the family foundation and exact change, "creating real racial equity in medicine."

He feels he isn't able to do so working within the healthcare system.

Jackson also shares the news with his mother, Dr. Catherine Fox (Debbie Allen) over the course of the episode.

He tries to convince April to move with him, and to bring their daughter Harriet and her husband Matthew, to Boston so he can still be there for their child.

April drops the bombshell that she and Matthew have split.

Which means that Japril could reunite *excitedly squeals*

Jesse Williams' current two-year contract is coming up at the end of the current 17th season.

'Grey’s Anatomy' has not been renewed for an 18th season but is expected to be.

You can watch the teaser for the "Look Up Child" episode below.