During his own struggle with the disease, Al Roker experienced a devastating loss.

On Thursday, Al Roker delivered devastating news to his audience while paying a beautiful tribute to a major figure in his life.

Thom Bell, a renowned Philadelphia producer, arranger, and songwriter born in Jamaica and died at 79, was memorialized on Instagram by the Today host following his stunning Twitter resignation announcement this week.

“Thom Bell, a legendary Philadelphia producer, went away at the age of 79,” Al wrote with a photo of Thom. “His music was the soundtrack of my life.”

“He was a part of the distinctive Sound Of Philadelphia, which featured The Spinners, The O’Jays, The Delfonics, The Stylistics, and Elton John. I appreciate your gift.”

Many of Al’s followers expressed their grief in the comments area, putting crying-face and praying-hand emojis alongside their tributes to the late performer.

“Such a tragic loss of an incredible skill that was able to capture and create a sound like no other,” one of them stated. “Enjoy your peace,” commented another. The tunes you sent us are fantastic.”

A third shared condolences and best wishes for Al’s speedy recovery: “Good news despite the sad news. I hope you’re feeling better and getting stronger because the @todayshow wouldn’t be the same without you.”

Al has had a terrible few weeks since, in addition to recovering from blood clots in his lungs, he received the heartbreaking news that his sister Patricia had died unexpectedly shortly after he was released from the hospital.

The Today show host, who has been with the show for over 25 years, was hospitalized for more than two weeks after Thanksgiving due to blood clots.

Last week, Al issued a home update to viewers. Al has now stepped away from the show. “It’s been difficult. I’m not going to mince words. I’ve undergone several surgeries, but this one has been the most difficult.”

“There are many people and things for which I am grateful,” he continued. “You feel immensely grateful for the outpouring of prayers and gratitude as a consequence.”

 

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