Carson Daly shared a special tribute to his stepfather during his return to “TODAY” on Thursday.
Daly’s stepfather, Richard Caruso died on Tuesday following a battle with bone cancer and just five weeks after his mother, Pattie Daly Caruso died of a heart attack.
On Oct. 24, Daly shared the heartbreaking news of his “Pops'” death with fans on Instagram:
Pops passed away today with absolute dignity & pride. The greatest man we ever knew. Our hero. He exemplified great faith, loyalty to family & hard work. He provided us all with so much. We’re grateful. His legacy lives on in all of us & anyone who had the pleasure of meeting him. He’s reunited with mom now. Our faith remains strong. Thanks for your continued thoughts and prayers.
Just two days later, Daly was welcomed back to “TODAY.”
“It’s been a rough month for my family. Last time I was here I was talking about my mom, who had unexpectedly passed away. She’d been the primary caregiver of my … stepfather, Dick Caruso, who passed away on Tuesday now,” he said. “His health was in peril; we know that was a foregone conclusion. Mom had been taking care of Dad. Mom was the one that went so quickly, and then we lost my Dad on Tuesday. It’s just been a crazy month. It’s just been really, really hard.”
Daly said that his stepfather came into his life when he was 8 years old, his biological father having passed away three years before.
“He took us in. He was my role model, my mentor, an incredible guy,” Daly said.
“[He] led by example and not by words.”
“Family-first — we always had dinner in high school. He was like, ‘Hey, I don’t care what you do after, but we’re all going to have family dinner at 6 o’clock, and then you can run off and go to the movies.’ That was dad,” he said, adding that their mutual love of golf made their relationship stronger. “He taught me so much about life and really the man that I am. I’m grateful that I had 85 years with him. He was an incredible person.”
Daly said that it has been “hard to grasp” his parents’ deaths, since they were healthy in June, but he is so grateful and “blessed” to have had them in his life.
“They were incredible parents,” he said, adding he hopes to pass their legacy on.