After having to evacuate her home due to the recent mudslides in Montecito, California, Ellen DeGeneres received even more devastating personal news this week. The beloved TV host and comedian’s father, Elliott DeGeneres, passed away, and to honor his life and love of show business, DeGeneres posted a touching tribute on social media and also mentioned her late dad during a segment of “The Ellen DeGeneres Show.”
“In addition to what’s going on in Montecito, I lost my dad this week. He was 92 years old. He had a good, long life,” DeGeneres said on the air.
She went on to explain details about his life—she remembered him as a “kind man”—and even attributed her sense of humor to her father.
“He was very funny. I think my brother Vance and I got our sense of humor from him,” she said.
It’s her sense of humor that landed her where she is today, and that also happens to be a place that her father loved—Warner Bros. Studios.
“When I was a kid, my dad took us on one vacation to Warner Bros. Studios,” DeGeneres wrote in an Instagram post after announcing his passing. “He loved this business. He loved that I was in it. When he died, I saw this rainbow over the stage they named for me.”
Apparently, the TV host was able to speak to Elliott DeGeneres just 10 minutes before his passing, and after—she saw that rainbow. She says the experience was “pretty amazing.”
Thankfully, DeGeneres has a strong support system around her in these devastating times. She’s got her wife, Portia de Rossi, her mother, Beth, and her brother, Vance. She also has her TV show audience and legion of fans she can rely on in a time of need.
“So many times over the past 15 years, people have come up to me and say to me that when they’re going through a tough time this show gets them through it,” she said, addressing her audience. “Today, I need you because there’s a lot going on in my life right now.”
Fans have already responded, showing their support. Many took to Twitter to send their condolences.
“Sorry for your loss. Love being sent to you and your family,” one fan wrote.
@TheEllenShow sorry for your loss. Love being sent to you and your family xxx
— Sarah (@sarah_savin) January 12, 2018
Many mention that they’re sending love to DeGeneres.
My condolences in my thoughts sending a big hug
— Emerson (@emerson7_m) January 12, 2018
Fans want her to know how truly special she is to them.
Ellen my heart goes out to you. Your story about your Dad brought tears to my eyes. Of course he had to be SO very proud of you. You are such a special person.
— Jeanie Cook (@Jeno53) January 12, 2018
We certainly hope DeGeneres is feeling the love this week. Our deepest condolences go out to her and her family and all those affected by the mudslides, which have reportedly left at least 17 people dead and 43 missing, according to the Los Angeles Times.