Ellen DeGeneres Pays Tribute to Late Father

It may be the job of Ellen DeGeneres to make people laugh on a daily basis, but the talk show host was sadly forced to turn serious on Thursday.

For the saddest of reasons:

Because her father passed away at the age of 92.

Ellen broke this news to her viewers in a moving tribute to her dad, Elliott, which followed a long talk with Oprah Winfrey about the fatal mudslides in their home town.

“In addition to what’s going on in Monetico, I lost my dad this week,” DeGeneres said, fighting back tears as she spoke.

“He was 92 years old.  He had a good, long life. And he lived his life exactly how he wanted. He was Christian science his entire life. He never had medicine his whole life.

"He never went to a doctor. We never had a vaccination. We never had medicine growing up and he lived to be 92.”

Continued the comedian:

"He was very proud of me. He loved this show. He was a kind man, very accepting man.

"There was not one bone of judgment in his body. He was very funny … Before he passed away I got to talk to him, so I got to say goodbye to him.”

We don't know the exact cause of death in this case.

But the man was 92 years old.

As you can see immediately above and below, Ellen also paid tribute to her father on Twitter yesterday.

"It wasn't unexpected," Ellen added on Instagram.

"I was able to say goodbye. When I was a kid, my dad took us on one vacation to Warner Bros. Studios. 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."

Previously, Ellen has said the following to Winfrey:

"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.

"Today, I need you because there's a lot going on in my life right now."

Our thoughts are with Ellen's family at this time.

Watch her tribute below:

Ellen degeneres pays tribute to late father

Meghan Markle: Why Her Father is Royally Upset at Prince Harry!

Hey, so, remember how Prince Harry kind of threw shade at Meghan Markle’s family?

Apparently, his offhand comment about how well his fiancee was getting along with his family managed to enrage all of his in-laws.

Including Meghan Markle’s father, who is reportedly “extremely hurt.”

Recently, the Ginger Prince himself spoke about how well Meghan Markle was getting along with the royal family.

Unfortunately, Harry may have gone a little too far in his praise.

At one point, he said this:

“She’s getting in there and it’s the family that I suppose she’s never had.”

That seems like a tremendous insult hurled at Meghan’s family — his future in-laws.

And it’s not going over well.

Thomas Markle Jr. reports to The Daily Mail that his father, Thomas Markle, is “extremely hurt” by Prince Harry’s words.

He spoke up in defense of his father’s family skills.

“He dedicated the majority of all his time and everything to her.”

Thomas Jr. is 51; 15 years older than Meghan. That tremendous age gap makes us wonder just how close they were.

“He made sure she had what she needed to be successful and get to where she’s at today.”

Having what you need to become successful isn’t all there is to family.

Thomas Jr. continues to defend his dad and Meghan’s upbringing.

“She’s had a really good family.”

Wendy Williams has pointed out that Meghan Markle’s family has had its … troubles, to say the least.

“We were as close as we could be, as tight as we could be, that’s what we were.”

Those are some interesting qualifiers for Thomas Jr. to use.

“We’d get together on Christmases, on holidays, on birthdays, on Thanksgivings.”

That sounds like the relationship that most people have with cousins who live out of state, not with their immediate family.

“It was always somewhere, even though we lived in different parts of [Los Angeles], we still all got together.”

We should probably mention that Thomas Jr. hasn’t actually spoken to his sister since 2011.

That’s nearly 7 years, folks.

“Obviously, she had a family. She was very privileged. She got everything she ever wanted.”

It’s always suspicious to hear one person say that another always got whatever they wanted. No one can speak to that but the person in question.

“We did the best that we could in terms of getting together for holidays and whatnot.”

Thomas Jr. follows up his defense of the Markle family by adding that he’d really love an invitation to the royal wedding.

“I don’t know if she gets to invite who she wants. But she’ll reach out if she wants me there, she’ll call me.”

That seems less likely after this interview, don’t you think?

“She knows where to find me. But that’s up to her, there’s no pressure.”

By virtue of saying this in an interview, he’s applying pressure. But he also makes it clear that his interest in attending the wedding is hardly personal:

“I wouldn’t mind seeing my little sister have the biggest wedding in the world. That would be incredible. … If my dad doesn’t walk her down the aisle, then I will.”

Before Thomas Jr. talked about how neat it would be to see his estranged sister get married, another Markle had already weighed in.

Meghan Markle’s half-sister clapped back at Prince Harry. Apparently, that’s just Samantha Grant’s style, as she said:

“She has a large family. She always did. Our dad is amazing and completely self sacrificing. We made it so that she had two houses. How fun it was!”

Look, you can put a positive spin on divorce all that you like. Sometimes, a divorce is the best thing that ever happens to a family.

But just because you’re happy with the way that things were doesn’t mean that everyone was.

If, as appears to be the case, Meghan has told Harry less-than-happy feelings about her family growing up, those are her experiences to share.

It’s wildly uncool for her siblings to “correct” her feelings just because they want their names in some headlines.


Jax Taylor: Father of Vanderpump Rules Star Dies Following Battle With Cancer

Sad news out of the world of reality television today, as Ronald Cauchi, the father of Vanderpump Rules star Jax Taylor, has passed away following a battle with cancer.

Taylor broke the news to his social media followers with a heartfelt message last night:

“My heart is broken, I lost my best friend and the best man I have ever met last night, I love you so much dad I can’t even breathe anymore, only person not letting me fall right now is my amazing girlfriend. I love you dad,” Jax tweeted.

Taylor first revealed that his father was battling stage IV cancer earlier this month:

“Yes cancer f–king sucks, watching my father go through this is killing me.. prayers to all the families that have to deal with this awful disease,” he tweeted on December 4.

“I don’t wish this disease on my worst enemy. #f–kcancer watching your loved ones battle while I sit and watch is the worst feeling.”

In the weeks that followed, Taylor opened up about his father’s illness in a number of candid interviews:

“It’s rough, because my dad, he’s like my idol,” Jax told The Daily Dish on December 11.

“My dad was always the person who never got sick, I always looked up to him. … It’s hurt our family. It’s hurt everybody. It just really sucks. During the holidays, it doesn’t make it any easier.”

Shortly thereafter, he made similar comments in an interview with Us Weekly:

“What do I want for Christmas this year? I want cancer to be out of my father’s body,” he told the magazine.

“If I can ask for anything right now, I just want my dad to be better.”

Jax’s co-stars have publicly offered their condolences and words of support on social media:

“Let’s flood @mrjaxtaylor with love and compassion. So sorry for your loss my friend,” tweeted VPR fan favorite Tom Schwartz.

“I’m so sorry brother,” remarked SUR restaurant manager Peter Madrigal.

Jax’s famous boss, Lisa Vanderpump, has urged fans to allow Jax his privacy and give his family time to heal.

Our thoughts go out to the Taylor family during this difficult time.

Watch Vanderpump Rules online to remind yourself of how Jax became one of the reliably amusing stars in the reality TV galaxy.


Selena Gomez, 13 Reasons Why SLAMMED, Called “Sick” by Grieving Father

As you know, 13 Reasons Why has been renewed for a second season, even though the Netflix series is incredibly controversial for its graphic portrayal of suicide.

Well, the father of a girl who took her own life immediately after watching the first season is railing against Netflix — and against Selena Gomez.

His distress is understandable, but calling Selena Gomez “sick” and “disturbed” is … well, that might be going a little too far.

Before we get into the father’s controversial comments, here’s a little very important background on why 13 Reasons Why is controversial.

There are graphic depictions of upsetting material like suicide and sexual assault.

Now, that doesn’t mean that 13 Reasons Why necessarily glorifies suicide. Some feel that it does, others feel that it shows the damage done by taking your own life and the grief that it causes.

However, there are certain things to do and to not do when you’re telling a story about suicide.

Namely, don’t highlight the method for it. Don’t provide step-by-step instructions on screen. Don’t include graphic depictions of suicide or self-harm.

If you’re thinking that you wouldn’t see such things and suddenly feel the urge to follow in a suicidal character’s footsteps, well, congratulations. I wouldn’t either. I can also eat peanuts with impunity, but some people can’t be in the room with peanuts or they’ll literally die.

But people who do experience suicidal ideation and are plagued by thoughts of suicide — because, folks, suicidal depression is an illness — are vulnerable to these images and messages.

Parents and school officials have been alarmed by what they describe as an increase in self-harming behavior and suicide attempts — and, in the saddest cases, successful suicides — which they believe are directly related to 13 Reasons Why.

Selena Gomez is an executive producers of 13 Reasons Why. She’s one of seven executive producers, which does not make her some sort of autocrat who controls the series, but she’s definitely the most famous name attached to the show.

John Herndon is a father who discovered his 15-year-old daughter hanging in her closet after apparently having binged 13 Reasons Why. Though Bella was rushed to the hospital, she died 10 days later.

And Selena Gomez’s famous name and famed compassion … well, they’re probably why John Herndon is calling her out in his statement to RadarOnline. And he’s not mincing words, either.

“I’m still completely disgusted. Selena makes me sick.”

Though we can only imagine Herndon’s level of grief, that’s a very strong statement.

“She is an extremely disturbed individual to think that this show has any kind of redeeming social value at all.”

Clearly, she signed onto this project with the best of intentions.

Despite Herndon’s anger, he shows that he understands what suicidal teens are experiencing. But not everyone does.

“Remember that there are teens out there that are in a little darker place and these could be your friends, your sisters.”

And he worries that the intended messages in 13 Reasons Why might be misintepreted.

“Selena Gomez and Netflix need to understand that not everybody’s going to understand this very well.”

He goes on to explain exactly what can happen when someone struggling with suicidal depression witnesses a show that handles the subject this poorly.

“Some people who are battling with depression, this could catch them at the wrong time, creating what is called the trigger event.”

For someone with PTSD, exposure to harmful content would be unpleasant or even awful. For someone with suicidal depression, it could be lethal.

Herndon talks about having written to Selena more than once … on her website.

“I asked that she remove her support and get Netflix to stop,” Herndon complains. “I received no response.”

Well, yeah. Selena Gomez doesn’t personally monitor her website. Honestly I forgot that she even has one. This isn’t 1996. Also, in 1996, Selena was 4.

He’s also calling out Netflix.

“They made those decisions to make themselves look like a socially responsible company yet they are making a product about people who are hurt and how they can hurt themselves.”

We’re sure that the intentions behind the series were just the opposite.

“I’ve seen too many posts by the creators who indignantly say it’s helped more people than it’s hurt.”

Sometimes people double down instead of admitting that they’re wrong. Perhaps this is one of those situations.

“How many people have to be hurt before somebody aside from me stands up and says, ‘You know, this is wrong.’”

Please remember, folks, that Selena Gomez’s involvement does not amount to creative control. And that just because you send her a message does not mean that she’s received it.

It also does not mean that she could somehow outvote her six fellow executive producers or seize the reigns of the series itself.

We have to imagine that part of the appeal for Selena was because she wanted a series that could help young people understand and deal with upsetting issues. And she may have, given her health struggles with Lupus, have been preoccupied with death itself.

We do think that the producers care about the series and the effect that it has. We don’t — can’t — know if 13 Reasons Why has actually claimed the lives of anyone, or if it only changed the time of their death or impacted the method.

All that we really know is that we’re so sorry for John Herndon’s loss. And that insulting Selena Gomez might get attention, but it’s not the way to effect positive change.