Kathie Lee Gifford shocked her “Today” show fans when she shared on Tuesday morning that she’d be leaving the show for good.
Alongside an emotional Hoda Kotb, Kathie Lee and her co-host of 10 years reminisced about the marvelous times they’ve had together ever since they crossed paths in 2008.
The chief of NBC News, Noah Oppenheim, had revealed the big news in an email only moments before the co-hosts went live on air.
“The minute you stepped into my life with both feet, everything changed,” said Hoda through tears, remarking that everything good that has happened to her has been somehow been marked by Kathie Lee’s entrance into her life.
“I remember thinking, ‘How does one person step into your life and change it like that?'” she added. “And you did that for me.”
But Hoda wasn’t the only one thankful for the blessed friendship that has molded them into kindred spirits over the last decade.
“I fell in love with a beautiful, talented, extraordinary Egyptian goddess named Hoda, and an amazing group of individuals who work tirelessly and joyfully at their jobs,” said Kathie Lee.
“We’re going to be friends for the rest of our lives,” she continued. “And I’m grateful to God for you. God’s used you in my life every bit as much as he’s used me in yours, sweety. That’s the way it goes. No crumbs on His table.”
It turns out, Kathie Lee only had intentions to stay with “Today” for one year, but her deep connection to Hoda kept her there much longer.
Kathie Lee will remain [to co-host] “Today” with Hoda until April 7, 2019 — the day that marks her -year anniversary on the show.
The grateful 65-year-old also gave a shoutout to fans who have followed them since their humble beginnings:
“I want to thank anybody who’s watched us all these years as well because we started out as like nothing… and we were outside on the plaza and the wind was blowing and the cards were flying. It was a disaster.”
In Oppenheim’s email, he relayed to staff the various reasons that Kathie Lee would be stepping away from the show:
“As we all know, Kathie Lee’s plate has been overflowing lately with film, music, and book projects, and after giving us eleven [sic] extraordinary years, she’s decided to focus her attention full-time on those other creative endeavors.”
Kathie Lee recently released a book entitled “The Rock, the Road, and the Rabbi” and is soon to be singing and acting in a film entitled “Then Came You”. On top of a new children’s book and other charity endeavors, the woman of many talents certainly has her hands full in the years to come.
“If you’re not being artistic, you die on the vine,” said Kathie Lee the day after announcing she was leaving. “I want to do something beautiful, and brand new and learn something brand new on the day I die.”