Al Roker Misses First Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in 27 Years as ‘Today’ Costars Send Their Love

Al Roker attends the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade

Al Roker attends the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade

Charles Sykes/Invision/AP/Shutterstock

A familiar face is missing from this year’s Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade.

Al Roker, who has made appearances for Today along the iconic parade route for 27 years, he is not at this year’s event as he is recovering from blood clots in his leg and lung that sent him to hospital earlier this month.

During the broadcast of NBC’s 96th Annual Parade on Thursday, his fellow morning show co-hosts sent Roker well wishes.

“For the last 27 saves, right now, Savannah, we would look to Al Roker, who is our Today show colleague and our best friend,” said Hoda Kotb. But as many of you have heard, Al is recovering – recovering very well from a recent medical problem. And we just want to say, we love you Al. I wonder if you’re watching, but we wish you a complete recovery.”

Savannah Guthrie also shared a heartfelt message with the Today show the weather anchor, before announcing it Today co-host Dylan Dreyer will take over this year.

“We love you, Al. See you next year,” Guthrie said. “And now, replacing Al, Mrs. Dylan Dreyer of the Today show. It is positioned uptown, on the starting line of the parade. Hi Dylan, good morning!”

RELATED: Al Roker is recovering after being admitted to hospital with blood clots in leg and lungs

Al Roker attends the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade

Al Roker attends the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade

Sachyn Mital/Shutterstock

RELATED: Everything to know about the 2022 Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade

Dreyer had sweet words for her, the weather expert. “Good morning guys and happy Thanksgiving. Al, we love you, we miss you and are thinking of you!”

During the broadcast, Dreyer spoke on the phone with President Joe Biden and First Lady Dr. Jill Biden. In addition to wishing first responders and troops a happy Thanksgiving, the president also acknowledged Roker.

“We’ll also call Al to see how he’s doing,” the president told Dreyer, to which she replied, “Al’s doing great.”

On Thursday, Roker shared on his Instagram that he had left the hospital. “This is my version of the Thanksgiving Day Parade: Getting ready to leave the hospital!” he said as she crossed the corridor. “Time to blow up this taco stand. Woohoo!”

He also captioned the post, “So much to be #thankful for on #Thanksgiving. Leaving the hospital and home for #Thanksgiving dinner.”

Once back home, Roker even tuned into the parade to watch his colleagues facilitate the show, posting a selfie in front of the TV. “Be home in time to see some of the #macysthanksgivingdayparade,” he wrote. “I miss being next to @savannahguthrie and @hodakotb.”

Roker, who has been absent from the NBC morning show for three weeks, provided an update on his whereabouts on Nov. 18, revealing in an Instagram post that he was receiving medical treatment for blood clots.

“Many of you have thoughtfully asked where I’ve been,” Roker, 68, wrote, captioning a photo of a bouquet of flowers. “Last week I was admitted to hospital with a blood clot in my leg which sent clots into my lungs.”

“After some medical treatment, I am so lucky to have terrific medical care and on the road to recovery,” he added.

“Thanks for all the well wishes and prayers and I hope to see you soon. Have a great weekend everyone,” he concluded.

RELATED: What it’s like to be in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade

Roker was a staple Today as the program’s primary weather host since 1996. For years before that, he made guest appearances as understudy for the late Willard Scott.

He was last absent from the show in late September, after testing positive for COVID-19.

While Roker dealt with his health issues, Dreyer filled in for him Today. She and co-hosts Guthrie, Kotb, Craig Melvin and Carson Daly opened up about their co-host on Friday’s show.

“He’s in a good mood, we’ve all talked to him,” Guthrie, 50, said with co-host Kotb, 58, noting, “He’s in great spirits”.

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