Ellen DeGeneres is usually the one making people laugh, but the comedian had the opposite reaction when she accepted the Presidential Medal of Freedom from President Barack Obama.
DeGeneres, 58, along with Robert De Niro, Tom Hanks, Michael Jordan and Diana Ross, attended a ceremony at the White House in celebration of the event.
Fighting back tears, DeGeneres stood beside the president and her achievements were described by a White House aide: “At a pivotal moment, her courage and candor helped changed the minds of millions of Americans, accelerating our nations constant drive toward equality and acceptance for all.”
DeGeneres’ tears started to fall as the speaker continued.
“Again and again, Ellen DeGeneres has shown us that a single individual can make the world a more fun, more open, more loving place — so long as we just keep swimming,” the aide concluded.
The Medal winner shared a look and smile with Obama – who is of course a regular guest on her talk show, before he hung the medal around her neck and gave the comedian a kiss on the cheek and a congratulatory hug.