The "Frasier" star and longtime fixture on the cover of Tiger Beat and Teen People made his first public acknowledgement that he is gay when he thanked his "partner" of 24 years, Brian, while accepting the best actor Tony for his performance in the musical "Curtains."
After the news was posted online, tween girls started flooding message boards and chat rooms to discuss the devastating news about the star they refer to as "DHP."
"DHP is so totally hot and sexy i can't believe he woud date a guy!!!" 11 year-old Lindsay Elleman of Spokane, Wash. wrote on her blog. "I always dreamed i would grow up to be like Dafne and he woud marry me. I have been crying all nite cuz I can't get all my DHP stickers off of my Trapper Keeper."
13 year-old Maria Nunez of El Paso, Texas, who runs a popular MySpace group called "David HOTTIE Pierce," urged her members not to give up hope.
"Maybe this is our fault 4 not sending enuff letters to show DHP how totally sexy all us girls think he is," she wrote in a bulletin to the 1,782 members of her group. "We all have to write him at least 2 e-mails a week telling DHP that we all luv him totally 4 ever so he doesn't have to be gay."
Pierce declined to comment, but sources close to the star/stud told Dateline Hollywood that coming out was a tough decision, since he will likely see his income from posters, downloadable photos, and ringtones featuring his voice plummet.
"I think the breaking point was when People asked him to do a shirtless spread for the cover of their 'Hottest Bachelors' issue," said the source. "It was painful enough to deceive all those young girls, but he couldn't stand to become a heartthrob for all those adult women too."
While many girls are still mourning the loss of their first crush, others are already moving on. "We need to forget about DHP and find another cutie who will totally appreciate our luv," 12 year-old Amanda Riley wrote to the "David Hottie Pierce" members in response to Nunez' note. "Has anyone seen that guy Anderson Cooper when your parents watch CNN? OMG he is so majorly HOT."