On day two of her new morning show, Megyn Kelly invited a close circle of family and friends to share their impressions of her — despite, as she called it, “the risk of massive humiliation.”
“So yesterday I shared a little bit about myself — my work as a journalist, my time as a lawyer,” the former Fox News anchor said Tuesday on Megyn Kelly Today, which debuted Monday and occupies the NBC show’s third hour.
“But just to leave no stone unturned — and despite the risk of massive humiliation — I left it up to my family and friends to give you the whole story,” she continued, introducing a segment compiled of on-camera interviews with her friends and family members.
“Megyn is a fun-loving, intelligent, crazy person — but in the best way,” said Liza Kirwan, Megyn’s step-sister.
“She’s silly and giggly,” added her brother Pete Kelly. “Making jokes, and laughing at herself.”
“She has such a rare gift that she can combine silliness with these crazy ninja litigator skills,” said Doug Brunt, Megyn’s husband of 11 years.
Megyn, 46, said the “gift of humor” was handed down to her “from a long line of great women — it started with my nanna, and my mom has got a great sense of humor.”
“She is a lot like me in many, many ways,” said Megyn’s mother Linda Kelly Kirwan. “She is on the outside what she is on the inside. She doesn’t ever act like a phony. I’ve never seen her be a phony. Except when she’s making fun of me — she does that a lot.”
“She was a fun kid,” Linda continued . “She used to do silly little things, like put her hand on her head and dance around to ‘Miss American Pie’ and ‘Yellow Ribbon.’ She loved those two songs and sang them incessantly.”
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The segment also shed some light on Megyn’s early years, including footage of a young Megyn teaching aerobics — which she did for 10 years after getting the idea from her brother Pete.
“I came home from school one day and told her that all the good-looking girls were aerobics instructors,” he said. “Three months later she started teaching aerobics.”
Megyn and her family also touched on the death of Megyn’s father, who passed away after suffering a sudden heart attack 10 days before Christmas in 1985 when Megyn was 15.
“Of course, her biggest blow was her father,” Linda said. “It really hit us all.”
“I remember vividly the moment my sister came into my room that night because I was asleep, saying, ‘Wake up, Daddy had a heart attack,’ ” Megyn recalled. “I rushed downstairs and the ambulance had already gotten there. My mother had been trying to revive him. He never came back. It was the saddest night of my life.”
“That was a very horrible, horrible night,” Linda said. “But I grabbed them all together in a circle and I said: ‘We will be the Kellys that your father knew — what we were meant to be.’ It was a pep talk about who we were as we were left and how we would carry his being with us.”
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Megyn, who shares Edward, 8, Yardley, 6, and Thatcher, 4, with Brunt, said she makes it a point to be “honest” with her children and “set a good example for them.”
“We’ll be sitting around the room, and she’ll come out with a couple of toy soldiers and pieces of paper and she’ll just invent a game,” said Brunt, 46.
“Every girl should have a girlfriend like Megyn Kelly,” said Janice Dean, Megyn’s best friend and Fox senior meteorologist. “Somebody who will tell you to stand up for yourself, and someone that will be on the other line when you’re crying your eyes out.”
But amongst all their high praise, Megyn’s family and friends had to admit there’s one area where she falls short.
“She’s not a great cook,” Brunt confessed. “But she is a great project coordinator. She can manage it, she gets the kids in and in the end, everyone has fun and the food is edible — usually.”
Megyn Kelly Today airs weekdays (check local listings).