It was a heartbreaking moment for Kathie Lee Gifford to lose her mother, Joan Epstein, 87, on Tuesday, but the Christian comedian takes comfort in the fact that her mother is now with Jesus Christ in Heaven.
Gifford, 64, appeared on the Today show on Wednesday and shared how her mother passed away. "My mom, if you didn't know... she passed away in her sleep in her beautiful bed yesterday morning," she said. "Just like [Gifford's husband] Frank, I believe she saw Jesus and Jesus took her breath away. And it gives me great comfort."
Gifford said her late husband was not afraid of death, and was even "really curious" about what Heaven will be like. Her mother is just the same. "My mom had no fear. She had the strongest faith of anybody I've ever known and I'm grateful for her every day of my life, even when she was driving me crazy, because she was such a lady," she said.
Epstein's death came two years after Frank passed away in August 2015. Gifford's father, Aaron Epstein, died in 2002. She announced Epstein's death by tweeting: "My precious mother, JOANNIE went home to JESUS & my DADDY this morning. We praise God for His promise of eternal life & we thank God for her."
Gifford's own experience with her mother's death encouraged her to offer words of comfort to those who are dealing with their own personal heartbreaks and difficulties.
"I know a lot of people are hurting in the world today, a lot of people are going through so much, there's a lot of fear in the world today. I just suggest that you take hold of God's hand because He's real good at carrying things for you," Gifford said. "Perfect love casts out all fear and He loves us perfectly. And nobody knew that more than my mom."