As you probably heard either yesterday or today, legendary comedian Don Rickles passed away at 90 years old due to kidney failure. Even in his advanced age, Rickles remained an unceasingly entertaining force and role model for anybody who tries to make people laugh. He led a full life and even though he was an insult king, he made many friends during his 70-plus years in show business. One of those is Jimmy Kimmel, who dedicated last night’s episode of Jimmy Kimmel Live! to the late comedian.
Rickles guested on Kimmel’s show 18 times since it went on the air in 2003, and over that period, Kimmel and Rickles formed a meaningful relationship with each other, both on and off set. Rickles’ passing isn’t easy to cope with, but Kimmel took it especially hard; His eyes filled with tears the moment he started talking about his friend.
“He was 90 years old, and I know it sounds crazy to say he was too young, but he was, because he was youthful and funny and sharp and generous,” Kimmel said. “I was fortunate enough to not only have Don on this show as a guest, but also to become close to him and his wife Barbara, which was a lot of fun for me.”
Kimmel went on to speak about how Rickles was a comedic hero of his from a young age, and he told hilarious anecdotes about Rickles’ relationship with Frank Sinatra, and in a touching moment, read some of the letters that Rickles wrote to him over the years. The episode also included a highlight package of Kimmel and Rickles’ best moments together, and Kimmel reminiscing about Rickles’ life and career with Adam Sandler.
Watch Kimmel’s tribute above and his conversation with Sandler below, and hit us up on Twitter and share your fondest Don Rickles memories.
Featured image: ABC/YouTube