Anderson Cooper Fights Back Tears as He Honors Anthony Bourdain

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Anderson Cooper is famous for his infectious laugh. At the same time, when he grieves, audiences cannot help but grieve with him.

Last week, Anthony Bourdain died of suicide. Like so many, Anderson Cooper used this platform to honor his late friend.

We've included the video, below. It is a beautiful tribute to a man who touched so many lives.

Anderson Cooper and Anthony Bourdain

on his show's dedication, Anderson Cooper speaks, and he is clearly still processing this heartbreaking news.

"Many of you, like many of us, are feeling a whole range of emotions: shock, sadness, confusion that a man who was seemingly having the ride of his life in the middle of his life has now suddenly reached the end of his life."

Folks, celebrities are real people, and they are left just as stunned and wounded from a sudden loss as anyone else.

"It's hard to imagine he's gone."

Anderson waxes poetic a little, but it's very appropriate under the circumstances.

"[It's] hard to imagine that he's not just off on some far away journey, hard to imagine that he'll not return with new stories to tell, new foods to share."

Anthony Bourdain went on many trips abroad, to sample new food and the accompanying cultures.

That is just not the case this time.

Anthony Bourdain Snapshot

Anderson Cooper clearly struggles, getting repeatedly choked up, as he discusses his departed friend.

"Honestly, talking about him in the past tense it's, it's really -- yeah, it's really hard to -- hard to imagine."


"Anthony loved drinking and eating, tasting the delights of the world immersing himself in other cultures and countries -- bringing the rest of us along on his journey."

And through that, Anthony was able to expose countless Americans to unfamiliar cultures and to educate so many that something being different did not mean that it was frightening or bad.

"It's impossible from the outside to every fully know what goes on in someone else's heart or in their head."

Many people who struggle with suicidal depression are able to hide their symptoms.

"It's impossible to fathom how quickly one's life can change."

Or how quickly one's life can come to an abrupt end.


Anderson Cooper, whose own brother committed suicide at 23, has tremendous empathy for Anthony Bourdain.

"But certainly, you know, the pain he must have been feeling, at least in that moment or in those moments, and the loneliness he must be feeling."

Millions are grieving this loss.

"It’s just terribly sad to think about."

Not just the loss, but the hidden pain and turmoil that must have led up to it.

"And makes me very sad for him to have -- to have a succumbed to that."

Anderson discusses the impact that Anthony had on his life.

"He gave me hope for what one’s life can become, can be at 61."

Anthony Bourdain Smiles

Many of the moments that Anderson Cooper's segment shares feature him and Anthony as they had appeared on past specials.

Anderson himself is one of those people who seems to "not like food," which is difficult to imagine. But he's unlikely to photograph his meals or go out of his way to try new things.

Naturally, his time on camera with Anthony was so often spent trying particularly exotic foods, the kind that might give pause even to someone who loudly and proudly loves food.

This video shows Anderson try blood sausage, a thymus gland (which produces T-cells for the immune system), and even part of an aortic valve.

Anthony explains that he sees accepting food -- no matter how strange or even potentially hazardous -- to be part of a cultural contract.

In his many journeys abroad -- to over 80 countries -- he acted as a sort of cultural ambassador, and he brought viewers with him along for the ride.

Anthony Bourdain Photograph

Some truly monstrous people have tried to shame Anthony Bourdain for his death.

Obviously, someone dying from suicide is being neither selfish nor cowardly. People do not ask for suicidal depression any more than they ask for any illness.

Anthony is remembered by his loved ones, including his 11-year-old daughter.

This is a heartbreaking reminder that suicide can strike anywhere at any time.

If you are struggling with suicidal thoughts, you can always call the National Suicide Prevention Hotline at 1-800-273-8255.

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