17 Reasons to Thank God for Kate Upton

We pay tribute to the blonde bombshell.
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Kate Upton is, without a doubt, the very model of a modern, uh, model. The 23-year-old bombshell captured America's heart not through the runway (although her signing to Elite Model Management in 2008 didn't hurt), but through YouTube after the now-infamous video of her dancing to 'Cat Daddy' with Terry Richardson went viral

While YouTube and Instagram are now fertile ground for a new generation of fame-hungry would-be models, Upton was the first to truly parlay her social media stardom into an aura of delight, boosting her visibility as much as her first appearance on the cover of Sports Illustrated's Swimsuit Edition did just months before. With her appearances on magazines from Vogue to our very own Hot 100 list and in a spate of movies, Upton's star is burning brighter than ever — and we're just sitting here basking in the glow.

With that, we present a brief tribute to the talented models. We can't wait to see where her career (and the internet) takes her next).

She started her modeling career with a humble (read: adorable) start...

...only to become a queen among models around the globe:

She looks positively stunning when dressed to the nines:

...and even better when she's dressed down...

...or all the way down:

She loves dogs as much as we do:

Despite her adventures, she always looks her best in bed:

She has eyes to die for:

She can be quite cheeky sometimes:

She looks incredible in black and white:

We can't tell if she's at her best when she's clean...

...or when she's feeling a bit dirty:

She's our favorite Easter bunny:

She looks ravishing by the water...

...and in it, too:

She knows how to deal with silly boys:

Not even gravity can keep her down: