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How Savannah honored her late father in her 50th birthday post

In an Instagram post, the TODAY co-anchor reflected on her “perfect birthday” and then turned her thoughts to the man who couldn’t share the day with her.

Savannah Guthrie turned 50 Monday, and the TODAY co-anchor ushered in her landmark birthday in a perfect way — from waking to a “pink sunrise” to unwinding with an “awesome face mask” (that actually “turned out to be a hair masque”).

She described it all in an Instagram post in which she shared her blessings at the end of the day, and that’s where she also honored someone who couldn’t be there with her to see it all — her late father, Charles Guthrie.

After mentioning the “flowers and old photos and dear messages” that beloved friends sent her way and the “favorite songs” that served as a soundtrack to her birthday, Savannah focused on the people whom she’s grateful for every day. She raved about husband Mike Feldman, their “darling angel babies,” Vale and Charley, as well as her mother, Nancy, and her siblings, Cam and Annie.

Then she added, “And not far from mind or heart ever ever: my dear daddy, Christmas baby like me.”

Savannah Guthrie is pictured next to her mother, Nancy, and father, Charles, in this vintage family photo.TODAY

It was a bittersweet nod to the man who meant so much to her, because while they shared similar Christmastime birthdates, 50 was a birthday milestone he never had the chance to reach himself.

Savannah was just 16 years old when her father suffered a fatal heart attack. But, as she revealed in an essay she penned in 2017, he made a tremendous impression on her in that time.

"My father was a seemingly unlikely mix of qualities: always strong, sometimes terrifying, loyal to the end, and disarmingly gentle and tender when it counted," she recalled. "He was also tall, affectionate and funny; he had that personality that people describe as 'lighting up the room.' He was a 5,000-watt bulb who could turn a mundane trip to the post office into a rip-roaring tale. People adored him and gravitated towards him."

In short, he lived his life to the fullest and taught her just how precious life is, which she celebrated in her Instagram post Monday night.

“He never turned 50 from 49,” Savannah wrote of her father. “But tonight I have! ... So I treasure this gift of life and remember you always. And thank god for a half century of His kindness and grace and blessing."

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