*You saw him outside of the “Today” show window – rain or shine, sleet or snow – just standing there quietly observing the segments, or pointing to the camera as it sweeps a shot of the crowd.
His name was Linny Boyette, a 71-year-old military veteran who was born in England but lived in the Bronx. He woke up every day at 3:30 a.m. to make sure he could secure his front row spot on the plaza by 5:30 a.m., according to NBC. “It makes my day,” he told “Today” in 2010.
However, health problems earlier this year prevented Boyette from attending the show regularly in his final months. Last week, a friend of Boyette’s told the Today crew that he was gravely ill.
Boyette died on Sunday after suffering a heart attack. The show dedicated a segment to him this morning [Oct. 6].
“Our dear friend, Linny, passed away this weekend,” Al Roker tweeted Monday. “He will be missed. Greatest Today fan ever. Our thoughts and prayers with Linny and family.”
Added Matt Lauer: “Peace Linny. And thank you for your gentle kindness.”
“So saddened to hear of Linny’s passing,” former “Today” host Meredith Vieira tweeted late Sunday. “I always loved seeing him every morning on the plaza. He had a wonderful smile and so sweet.”
Watch “Today’s” tribute to Boyette below: