Savannah Guthrie and Hoda Kotb Offer Candid Reactions to Matt Lauer's Firing
Today anchors Savannah Guthrie and Hoda Kotb delivered the news Wednesday that long-time reporter Matt Lauer was fired from the network following a report of sexual misconduct.
Guthrie delivered a statement from NBC Chairman Andy Lack, telling viewers that a colleague reported an incident of "inappropriate sexual behavior in the workplace" and after a "serious review," executives decided to terminate the veteran host.
But amongst delivering the facts, Guthrie and Kotb gave their candid reactions to the news, which they had only learned "moments" before the broadcast.
Matt Lauer has been terminated from NBC News. On Monday night, we received a detailed complaint from a colleague about inappropriate sexual behavior in the workplace by Matt Lauer. As a result, we’ve decided to terminate his employment. pic.twitter.com/1A3UAZpvPb— TODAY (@TODAYshow) November 29, 2017
"As I'm sure you can imagine, we are devastated and we are still processing all of this," Guthrie said of Lauer's absence.
"We were both woken up with the news kind of predawn," Kotb added. "And we're trying to process it and make sense of it. And it will take some time for that."
Lauer was informed of the network's decision late Tuesday night before he went to bed, according to a source for CNN.
"For the moment, all we can say is that we are heartbroken. I'm heartbroken for Matt. He is my dear, dear friend and my partner and he has been loved by many, many people here," Guthrie said. "And I'm heartbroken for the brave colleague who came forward to tell her story and any other women who have their own stories to tell."
She added that the network would continue to share developments on the breaking story in the coming days. "We will be covering this story as reporters, as journalists," she assured viewers.
A source told PEOPLE that Lauer's Today show family was blindsided by the accusations against him and was shocked by his termination.
"It's like a death in the family. Everybody is crying," the insider said. "No one knows what the f--k happened. It came out of nowhere."
The source said the show's crew claimed there were no whisperings or rumors in the days leading up to Wednesday.
"Everyone wants to know what is going on," the source said. "Matt was really popular around here."
Lauer, 59, has worked as a co-anchor of Today since January 1997.