Tracy Morgan credits Saturday Night Live with making veteran dad laugh again

Former Saturday Night Live star Tracy Morgan has credited the U.S. sketch comedy show with helping his dad laugh again after serving in the military during the Vietnam War. The comedian was one of the long-running comedy series’ breakout stars during his seven seasons on SNL, but Morgan’s relationship with the show started long before he was hired in 1996.
During an interview with Queen Latifah on her talk show on Tuesday (15Apr14), Morgan gushed over SNL, particularly its profound impact on his father, Jimmy Morgan, after he came home from war in the 1970s.
He explained, “You gotta understand – my father went to Vietnam. When he came back, he hadn’t laughed much. But in 1975, we watched Saturday Night Live, and my father fell out.
“My dad died in 1989. So when I became a cast member, I told (executive producer) Lorne Michaels, ‘Thank you for making my dad laugh again.'”
In 2009, six years after he left SNL, Michaels invited Morgan back to host the programme, which also served as a milestone in his career.
The funnyman adds, “It was really special just to be asked. Then to go back and host it, that was dedicated to him (dad). But that was difficult at that time because that’s when my kidneys started to fail. So I was sick. But nothing was going to stop me from hosting Saturday Night Live.”
In 2010, Morgan received a kidney transplant, forcing him to miss out on filming episodes of hit sitcom 30 Rock.