TV legend Eamonn Holmes has broken down in tears over his late father – 31 years after his sudden death.
The 61-year-old presenter gave an emotional interview in an episode of The Meaning of Life, which aired on Irish TV last night.
“He’s been gone 31 years now but I still miss him every day,” said Eamonn as he shared the clip.
“I can’t recall my late Father without thinking of how he always wanted to provide… even when I had a successful career.
“I think like all of us he just liked to be needed.”
In the heartbreaking clip which saw Eamonn overcome with emotion, he described a vivid memory of his dad.
“All he did was say things like, ‘do you need any money?’,” said Eamonn.
“I was on Ulster Television, earning £12,000 a year. He wasn’t earning £12,000 a year or anything near it.
“One day my mum said ‘let him give you some money’.
“I did. I was like ‘yeah dad’ and he’d give me twenty quid.”
The This Morning host’s father Leonard suffered a fatal heart attack while driving in the countryside of Northern Ireland aged 65 and recalled the harrowing experience in his 2006 autobiography, This Is My Life.
The presenter had been in London over Easter in 1991 when his parents and younger brother Conor spent the weekend in their caravan in seaside town Ballycastle, Antrim.
Following the weekend, Eamonn called his parents’ home on April 3 hoping to hear all about their trip however there was no answer, nor to the call he made 30 minutes later.
At 7pm that night, Eamonn received a phonecall from his brother Colm who told him of their father’s death after he had taken ill returning from their trip.
The broadcaster wrote in his book that his father became unwell suddenly and had pulled over on the road and couldn’t move from the driver’s seat – but on a country road and without a phone there wasn’t much Eamonn’s mother Josie could do.
By chance a family friend, John Linehan, had been visiting the area and came to their aid while they waited for the ambulance to arrive.
Eamonn wrote: “When John got to the car, Daddy was still in the driver’s seat. Mum had already flagged someone down who telephoned for help.
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“Conor, loyal to the end, took on the role of an adult and was still on the back seat, leaning over holding on to his dad.
He continued: “He grew up a lot that night. Realising his distress, John steered him away from what was going on. He then knelt beside Dad.
“As they waited for an ambulance, John kept talking to him until he became unconscious. He tried to resuscitate him but by the time the ambulance crew got there it was too late.
“At sixty-five years old, before he could retire from work and spend many more days with Mum, a heart attack had taken my dad away from us.”
Upon hearing the devastating news, Eamonn rushed to Heathrow airport and managed to get on the final flight to Belfast so he could be with his family.
The TV star said that his mother Josie never got over Leonard’s death, while Eamonn explained that he never got over the grief of seeing his father’s body in the mortuary.
Eamonn Holmes has opened up about his father’s tragic death[/caption]