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Hoda Kotb Chokes Up Paying Tribute to Frank Gifford, Husband of Kathie Lee

Image: Hoda Kotb Chokes Up Paying Tribute to Frank Gifford, Husband of Kathie Lee
Hoda Kotb (L) and Kathie Lee Gifford attend the 2014 Matrix Awards at The Waldorf=Astoria on April 28, 2014 in New York City. (Ilya S. Savenok/Getty Images)

By    |   Tuesday, 11 Aug 2015 10:00 AM

Hoda Kotb choked up while paying tribute to football legend Frank Gifford, the husband of her co-host Kathie Lee Gifford, during the fourth hour of the "Today" show on Monday.

"She asked for people not to come to her house yesterday, so I left the airport and drove to her house,'' Kotb said, Today.com reported.

"When I got there she looked at me and she said, 'I'm so glad you never listen to me.' You know how she talks about her faith and I know she lives her faith and I believed it, but I've got to tell you, I didn't believe it more than I did yesterday when I saw her after that. Frank had passed away hours before and she said she was rejoicing in his life. When she said it, you felt it."

Kathie Lee told Kotb that she considered her husband's life a "triumph."

"A 4-year-old girl having cancer is a tragedy," Kotb related, summing up Kathie Lee’s words.

"She said Frank Gifford was a Hall-of-Famer, an incredible football broadcasting legend and, more than all that, he was a family man. She said, 'He built this family, he is a triumph. Remember that Frank Gifford is a triumph, he got to live to almost 85 years old.'"

Frank Gifford, a legend on the field in the 1950s and '60s, made it to many Pro Bowls as part of the New York Giants, and later joined "Monday Night Football" as a sportscaster in 1971, during its second season.

He married Kathie Lee Epstein in 1986. It was his second marriage. Together, the couple had a son, Cody, and a daughter, Cassidy, USA Today reported.

Kotb noted that the Gifford family has asked that in lieu of flowers, donations be made to Cassidy's Place, a school named after their daughter that was created to help disadvantaged children.

 


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Hoda Kotb choked up while paying tribute to football legend Frank Gifford, the husband of her co-host Kathie Lee Gifford, during the fourth hour of the "Today" show on Monday.
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