The In Memoriam section of the 66th annual Emmy Awards was as emotional as ever, but it’s what came after that likely left many with tears in their eyes. Comedian Billy Crystal gave a moving tribute to the late Robin Williams, visibly holding back his own tears.
“He made us laugh hard. Every time you saw him on television, movies, night clubs, arenas, hospitals, homeless shelters, for our troops overseas, and even in a dying girl’s living room for her last wish,” Crystal begins.
He continues, “I spent many happy hours with Robin on stage. I mean, the brilliance was astounding. The relentless energy was kind of thrilling. I used to think if I could just put a saddle on him and stay on for eight seconds I was going to do OK.”
After sharing a story about attending a baseball game with Williams and Whoopi Goldberg, Crystal summed the comedian up best as “the greatest friend you could ever imagine.” “It’s very hard to talk about him in the past because he was so present in all of our lives,” he says. “For almost 40 years, he was the brightest star in the comedy galaxy.”
Confident that the light Williams shined on the world will last forever, Crystal concludes, “The glow will be so bright, it’ll warm your heart, it’ll make your eyes glisten and you’ll think to yourselves, ‘Robin Williams, what a concept.'” A selection of talk show appearances and stand-up comedy clips featuring Williams were also shown.
Williams committed suicide at 63 years old on Aug. 11. His wife later revealed he was in the early stages of Parkinson’s disease and had maintained his sobriety.