Kathie Lee Gifford recalls her last meeting with Regis Philbin


Kathie Lee Gifford last saw Regis Philbin just two weeks ago, during what was to become her last meeting with her close friend before his death.Gifford, who worked alongside Philbin from 1985-2000 on “Live! With Regis and Kathie Lee, ”said that at their recent lunch, she unfortunately“ felt a lot more fragility than I had seen in him last time in January in Los Angeles.

“I was from Tennessee, where I live most of the time, and of course the first call I always make is to Regis and Joy [Philbin]”Gifford said on Monday’s episode of” Today “. “I said, ‘Can we get together, can we have lunch?’ So they came about two weeks ago.

Gifford, who like the Philbines also has a home in Connecticut, said, “We’ve just had the best time.” But after the Philbines left: “I just thought, ‘Lord, is this the last time I’m going to see my friend?’ Because he was failing, I could tell.

Regis Philbin et Kathie Lee Gifford
Regis Philbin et Kathie Lee GiffordGetty Images

Then Gifford said “something told him” the other day to go back to the East Coast again.

“I got on a plane, got home and immediately heard the news from Régis. I called Joy immediately, spoke with her, ”said Gifford, 66.

Philbin died of natural causes on Friday at the age of 88.

Gifford said she visited Joy, Philbin’s wife of 50 years, on Sunday when they “remembered for a little while.”

“I was just grateful to spend time with them, to comfort them a little, to let them know that I believe with all my heart that I know where Regis is and who he is with because I have had so many conversations with him. the years of faith and where we go when this life is over, and he was very curious, as always, ”Gifford said.

Gifford added that she was “so grateful” to have this last time with Philbin.

“And that was so precious because when I spoke to Joy the day I found out right after her passing, she said, ‘Kathie, he hadn’t laughed in a long, long time.’ She said, “I was so worried about him,” Gifford said.

On Saturday, Gifford posted a moving tribute to Philbin on Instagram, saying: “There has never been anyone like him. And there never will be.


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