More than just colleagues. Ellen DeGeneres had a close bond with Stephen “tWitch” Boss before his untimely death in December 2022.
The comedian met the dancer in 2011, two years before he first appeared on The Ellen DeGeneres Show as a guest DJ. He went on to appear as the in-house DJ beginning in 2014 and was later named an executive producer in 2020, often filling in for DeGeneres as the guest host when she was out.
She gushed about their relationship while paying tribute to Boss on one of the final episodes of her talk show in May 2022.
“Over a decade ago, I met someone who changed my life — and our show,” DeGeneres began. “I love you so much and it’s been an emotional week.”
DeGeneres noted that it was a “coincidence” Boss’ mom was in the audience on the day the surprise tribute was planned.
“You always make me smile and laugh and anyway, we put together a little something together just to say how much we all love you here,” she continued before the package played.
In addition to a series of clips from Boss’ time on the show, DeGeneres gushed: “He’s my pal. He’s my sidekick. We have this connection, so, just looking over and — he makes me laugh. He really, really makes me laugh.”
While listing her “fond memories” with Boss, DeGeneres recalled waxing him on air and noted that whenever he missed a taping, things weren’t the same.
“Whenever he’s not here — for whatever reason — it’s just different. I mean, I count on him to look over at and make silly jokes,” she explained. “I love you, tWitch. We tell each other that every day when we say goodbye after the show. We both say, ‘Love you.’ He says, ‘Love you much,’ and I say, ‘Love you.’ So, he’s never gonna be out of my life. He’s always gonna be a part of my life.”
Seven months later, Us Weekly confirmed that Boss was found dead one day after his wife, Allison Holker, informed police that he had left the house without his car, explaining that was unlike her husband. The Los Angeles Police Department subsequently arrived at the scene of a shooting at a hotel where Boss was found dead.
“It is with the heaviest of hearts that I have to share my husband Stephen has left us,” Holker said in a statement at the time. “Stephen lit up every room he stepped into. He valued family, friends and community above all else and leading with love and light was everything to him. He was the backbone of our family, the best husband and father, and an inspiration to his fans. To say he left a legacy would be an understatement, and his positive impact will continue to be felt. I am certain there won’t be a day that goes by that we won’t honor his memory. We ask for privacy during this difficult time for myself and especially for our three children.”
Boss is survived by Holker, their two kids — Maddox and Zaia — and her daughter Weslie, whom he adopted following their 2013 wedding.
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