“I stayed year after year making a million memories with people I will never forget. I leave Today with a grateful heart but I’m truly excited for this new creative season in my life. Many thanks to all the wonderful people who made the years fly by,” Gifford said in a statement in December 2018 when announcing her departure.
On Thursday, April 4, multiple celebrities who appeared on the show over the years stopped by or sent in videos to support Gifford and say their goodbyes. John Cena, Ken Jeong, Jane Krakowski, Kristen Chenoweth, Andy Cohen and Kourtney Kardashian were among the group.
However, the cohosts of the Today had the most to say about the former Live with Regis and Kathie Lee host. During Thursday’s show, Kotb, 54, emotionally reflected on their time sitting side by side, drinking wine and hosting together. “She totally jumped into my life in a way that I had never experienced before,” she said. “She stepped into it, and I was transfixed by her. … I don’t know if you’ve ever had that chemistry where you connect with someone like that. I had it, and it was a feeling I’d never had before, that kind of intensity.”
The hosts also opened up to Us Weekly exclusively about what they’ll miss the most about Gifford.