• The Modern Family series finale wraps up the beloved characters’ stories, with Jay surprising Gloria by learning Spanish to join her and their son, Joe, on a trip to Colombia to explore their culture.
  • Manny, after embracing his love for theater and literature, embarks on a trip around the world with his biological father, while Haley and Dylan move into their own apartment after getting married and having twins.
  • Claire and Phil become empty nesters as their kids move out, planning a trip in the RV that Phil’s late father left them, while Alex moves to Switzerland for a research opportunity and Luke heads off to college at the University of Oregon. Cam, Mitch, and Lily adopt a baby boy and move to Missouri, where Cam becomes a college football coach.

The iconic sitcom Modern Family wrapped up its 11-season run in 2020 and with so much going on, it’s worth looking back to have the Modern Family ending explained. When looking at how did Modern Family end, it expanded to include various facets of everyday life that people run into – either with themselves or with their extended families. Modern Family follows the lives of three branches of the same family, led by patriarch Jay Pritchett, with each family being vastly different.

The various Prtichell families live within minutes of each other, so every episode chronicles their daily interactions with one another. By the time the show ended, a lot of the final moments for these beloved characters had strong connections to what they were doing way back in the series premiere. With 11 seasons’ worth of stories, there was a lot to wrap up. The Modern Family ending explained includes where the sitcom left each of its characters in the Modern Family series finale.

RELATED: Which Modern Family Character Are You, Based On Your Zodiac Sign?

Jay, Gloria, & Joe Reconnect With Family

Jay and Gloria talking in Modern Family.

In Modern Family season 4, Jay and Gloria give birth to a son of their own named Joe. Gloria and her oldest son, Manny, had their own lives and traditions before they met Jay, and Gloria made sure much of that revolved around her Colombian heritage. Many of Gloria’s storylines over the years focused on her culture clashing with the rest of the family. Jay, ever set in his ways, often pushes back on bringing a new culture into his life.

In the Modern Family series finale, audiences learn that Gloria is going to take Joe to Colombia for the summer to learn more about his family and culture. In an effort to surprise Gloria, Jay reveals he’s been learning Spanish, so he can accompany his wife and son on their trip. As Gloria has put in so much time and effort with his family, Jay decides it’s about time he returns the favor. It was one of the most fitting Modern Family endings for any character on the show.

Manny Travels The World With His Dad

Manny and Sherry talking to Gloria at home on Modern Family

Manny, however, doesn’t join Jay, Gloria, and Joe on their trip because he’s about to embark on one of his own. With his love of theater, literature, and wine, Manny had a taste for the finer things in life. But as he grew up comfortably in Jay’s home, he never got the chance to experience other cultures firsthand. Manny’s story ends with him roughing it for a change. Before the Modern Family ending, Manny’s biological father proposes they travel the world together for a year. He is hesitant, but Gloria urges him to go, so he can grow and see the world. The Modern Family series finale sees Manny getting ready for that trip.

Claire & Phil Become Empty Nesters

Claire and Phil as the corpse Bride and Groom in Modern Family.

With three kids, Claire and Phil’s lives have always been a bit chaotic. They were constantly bailing out Haley, figuring out how to raise a near-genius child with Alex, and dealing with Luke’s hijinks. Their Modern Family storylines often revolved around them finding solutions to their kids’ problems. So it’s only fitting that Claire and Phil’s story ended with a little peace and quiet.

By the time Modern Family ends, all three of Phil and Claire’s kids, plus Haley’s family, were living with them. Claire and Phil couldn’t stand the lack of space, so they inform their kids that at least one of them must move out. In a surprising turn of events, all three of their kids decide they are ready to move on. Phil and Claire are initially heartbroken by their sudden status as empty nesters. But they eventually learn to embrace the next chapter of their lives. The final moments of the couple in the series see them planning a trip, traveling in the RV that Phil’s late father left them.

Haley & Dylan Get Their Own Apartment

Haley and Dylan wedding in Modern Family.

The eldest Dunphy went through quite the journey over the course of Modern Family. When audiences meet her, she goes through a party girl phase, multiple boyfriends, and even gets kicked out of college. But near the Modern Family ending, things started to fall into place for Haley. She settles into a career in fashion and ends up reconnecting with her first boyfriend, Dylan.

Haley ends up getting pregnant with twins, so she and Dylan get married to honor their love and commitment to one another. Their children, George and Poppy, are born at ending of the penultimate season. The Modern Family ending explained Haley, Dylan, and their kids are living with Phil and Claire. But in the Modern Family series finale, as Cam, Mitch, and Lily move away to Missouri, the young couple finally moves into their old house. Despite that, actor Sarah Hyland hated her character’s ending on Modern Family.

Alex Moves To Switzerland

Ariel Winter as Alex Dunphy in Modern Family

Near the end of Modern Family, Alex graduated from college and took a cushy and well-paid corporate job. The middle Dunphy kid previously had dreams of using her wit to save the world. After a run-in with her former professor/old crush, who happens to be Haley’s ex-boyfriend, she decides it’s time to reinitiate that passion. Arvin offers her a spot on his research team, which Alex quickly accepts.

The Modern Family ending explained, thanks to a little push from her big sister, that Alex still has feelings for Arvin. He calls her to his office, where she lets this information slip. Arvin only intended to inform her their study was moved to Switzerland, but he reciprocates Alex’s feelings. She agrees to follow Arvin to Switzerland to participate in his research group, and it appears as if the duo began a relationship ahead of their trip.

RELATED: Alex Dunphy’s Love Interests, Ranked

Luke Goes To College

Luke and Jenny in Modern Family.

The youngest Dunphy grew up quite a bit over the show’s 11 seasons. But one thing he was always scared to do was finally leave the nest – it doesn’t help that college never worked out for him. As he said in the Modern Family ending, he applied to colleges but never heard back. However, he finally reveals that he was accepted to the University of Oregon, and intends to go in the fall.

While he and his sisters bickered quite a lot over the course of the award-winning television show, the siblings share a sweet moment in the Modern Family series finale. They promise to stay in touch, with Luke asking if he can still come to them for relationship advice. Luke also bonded with Manny throughout the entire series. They share an emotional goodbye, as it’ll be the first time they’ve been apart since they met as young children.

Cam, Mitch, & Lily Welcome A New Family Member And Move

Cam, Mitch and Lily in Modern Family

Cam, Mitch, and Lily perhaps go through the biggest changes during the Modern Family ending. For much of the series, the couple wrestled with whether they wanted to adopt another baby. It nearly happened to them around the same time Gloria was pregnant with Joe, but it ended up not working out. So they let go of that dream and remained a happy family of three. Cam also had a few dreams of his own he thought he’d have to let go of permanently. Cam is from Missouri. He’s a farmer who is incredibly proud of where he comes from. Mitch always told Cam they could move back to Missouri one day, but never followed through.

In the last few seasons, Cam started coaching high school football. He has a life-long passion for the sport and dreams of coaching at the college level, and he almost gets that chance in Missouri, but he is passed over for the job. On the same day that Cam finds out he didn’t get the job, he and Mitch receive a call from the adoption agency. There’s a baby boy up for adoption, and Mitch and Cam go for it. Cam and Mitch even move to a bigger house to accommodate their growing family. They even name their son after their new street – Rexford (aka Rex).

As they settle into the next phase of their lives, Cam gets a surprising call; the coach that got the job over him was fired, and the job is his if he wants it. He accepts the gig and he, Mitch, Lily, and Rex move out to Missouri to begin the next chapter of their lives.

What The Modern Family Cast Has Done Since The Show Ended

The Modern Family cast in season 1

While it was interesting to see how did Modern Family end for the characters, it was also interesting to see where each of the Modern Family stars went after the series went off the air. For Sofia Vergara, she already had a solid gig going at the same time as Modern Family. She remains one of the judges on America’s Got Talent, while also picking up a role in the upcoming Netflix crime drama Griselda as the title character and voicing a role in the adult animated movie Strays in 2023. Her on-screen husband Ed O’Neal appeared in the movie The Last Shift the same year Modern Family ended but has done nothing else since then.

Julie Bowen appeared in two movies after the Modern Family ending – The Fallout and Mixtape. She also found a new TV show, with a recurring role as the voice of Patricia Banks in Hailey’s On It! Ty Burrell also joined an animated series after his role as Phil, voicing Jack Harris in the Hulu series Duncanville. Jesse Tyler Ferguson had a role in the 2023 horror comedy Cocaine Bear as Peter, a wildlife activist. Eric Stonestreet went on to host the reality game show Dominio Masters and has a role as the Mad Santa in season 2 of The Santa Clauses on Disney+.

As for the kids, Sarah Hyland has appeared in the movie

My Fake Boyfriend
. However, her biggest roles are as the host of

Play-Doh Squished
and also of the dating series

Love Island USA
. She also has a starring role in the Peacock series

Pitch Perfect: Bumper in Berlin
alongside her

Modern Family
love interest Adam Devine. Ariel Winter hasn’t done much since the

Modern Family
ending, with her most recent appearance being as a contestant on

Stars on Mars
. Nolan Gould popped up in a 2022 episode of

Grey’s Anatomy
, while Rico Rodriguez and Aubrey Anderson-Emmons haven’t had any roles since their time on

Modern Family

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