Kelly Ripa will remember Regis Philbin in an upcoming special with “20/20”.
The “Live With Kelly And Ryan” host, 49, who hosted “Live With Regis And Kelly” with the late icon between 2001 and 2011, will appear in the special, “Regis Philbin: The Morning Maestro”, and open up about the lessons Philbin taught her.
“What I think my biggest takeaway from the 11 years that I shared with him was that you have to be yourself,” she said in a preview of the tribute.
Adding, “You cannot be one person on camera and a different person once the light goes off or the audience is gone, you have to be who you are.”
Following the news of Philbin’s death, Ripa dedicated Monday’s episode of “Live” to him. She also wrote an emotional tribute on Instagram, “He was the ultimate class act, bringing his laughter and joy into our homes everyday on ‘Live’ for more than 23 years.”
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We are beyond saddened to learn about the loss of Regis Philbin. He was the ultimate class act, bringing his laughter and joy into our homes everyday on Live for more than 23 years. We were beyond lucky to have him as a mentor in our careers and aspire everyday to fill his shoes on the show. We send our deepest love and condolences to his family and hope they can find some comfort in knowing he left the world a better place. – Kelly and Ryan
“As people get older, you always know that certain things are inevitable, and passing away is one of those things, but Regis is one of the people that we all believed would somehow figure out a way around the inevitable,” Ripa continued. “It was not in the cards, I suppose…They don’t make them like Regis anymore.”
Philbin died Friday, July 24. He was 88 years old.
“Regis Philbin: The Morning Maestro” airs tonight.