The bittersweet announcement was incredibly emotional, especially for Kathie’s colleague and dear friend Hoda Kotb.
On her last week on the show, Gifford was surprised by a special guest who popped in to bid her goodbye.
Comedian and actor Henry Winkler appeared at Studio 1A to surprise Kathie Lee Gifford and wish her farewell. Winkler always brings laughter whenever he goes so it’s not surprising that Hoda and Kathie were giggling from the moment he walked on to the set.
Gifford and Winkler met for the first time when she was working alongside Regis Philbin on Live With Regis and Kathie Lee before she joined Today. The pair even co-hosted together when Regis was gone.
Winkler chatted about his recent work, the TV series Barry, and the amazing people he has been lucky to work with. The comedian also talked about Kathie’s departure from Today, saying:
One door closes another door opens, especially when you got your personal power. I cannot wait to see where you’re going next.
But it wasn’t the only surprise that happened on the show that day. Gifford presented a drape-covered present for Hoda in order to celebrate “the joy and honor of sitting next" to her for 11 years.
When she pulled back the cover, Kotb was so emotional, she couldn’t hold back tears. It was a beautiful portrait of Hoda and her 2-year-old daughter, Haley Joy.
How adorable is that? Even though the two ladies are parting ways professionally, we are certain that they will stay friends forever.