Report: Matt Lauer Leaves NYC to Explain Firing to Son

By Epoch Newsroom
Epoch Newsroom
Epoch Newsroom
November 29, 2017 Updated: November 29, 2017

After he was fired from NBC News, Matt Lauer reportedly left New York City to explain the situation to his son, 16.

Lauer’s firing was announced on Wednesday, Nov. 29 on “Today,” the show he co-hosted for 20 years. Co-host Savannah Guthrie and Hoda Kotb made the announcement at the start of the talk show.

According to sources speaking to the New York Post, which has extensively reported on the inner workings of the “Today” show for years, Lauer drove to his son’s school on Wednesday to explain what happened.

The unnamed source told the paper: “Matt’s first thought was that he needed to explain this to his son Jack in person, as it would be far more painful for him to read about it in the press and online. Matt drove out to Jack’s prep school this morning.”

Lauer has yet to address the firing in a public comment.

NBC News chief Andy Lack issued a statement to staff, saying Lauer was fired after company executives “received a detailed complaint from a colleague about inappropriate sexual behavior in the workplace.”

“It represented, after serious review, a clear violation of our company’s standards. As a result, we’ve decided to terminate his employment. While it is the first complaint about his behavior in the over twenty years he’s been at NBC News, we were also presented with reason to believe this may not have been an isolated incident,” Lack said in the memo.

Lauer has a daughter named Romy, 14, and an 11-year-old son, Thijs, with wife Annette Roque, who live in the Hamptons east of New York City. Sources told the Post that “he plans to focus on spending time with his two other children after spending time with Jack.”

“We just learned this moments ago, just this morning,” Guthrie said live on the air, visibly shaken. “As I‘m sure you can imagine, we are devastated.”

Lauer’s accuser issued a statement through her lawyer, Ari Wilkenfeld, and had a meeting with NBC officials on Monday that lasted several hours.

“In fewer than 35 hours, NBC investigated and removed Mr. Lauer,” Wilkenfeld wrote in a statement, Reuters reported. “Our impression at this point is that NBC acted quickly, as all companies should, when confronted with credible allegations of sexual misconduct in the workplace.”

The complaint said the sexual misconduct occurred while Lauer and the female colleague were covering the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics in Russia, NBC News reporter Stephanie Gosk said on air.

The misconduct continued after the Games, Gosk said. An NBC representative did not respond to a request for more details.

Reuters contributed to this report.

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