On Sunday night, actor Shemar Moore paid tribute to his good friend Kristoff St. John at the 2019 Daytime Emmys.
Before he announced the winner for Outstanding Drama Series, Moore showed some love to the cast of “The Young and the Restless,” bringing the focus to Kristoff. He said, “I want to thank CBS. I want to thank 'The Young and the Restless' and I want to thank the cast of 'The Young and the Restless' for honoring him the right way. The tribute that aired this past week on 'The Young and the Restless', saying goodbye to Kristoff and his character, Neil Winters, was so beautifully, beautifully done. I know Kristoff is proud of all of us.”
Shemar, who returned to the series for Kristoff’s tribute episode, continued, "Kristoff was in the game 28 years. He wasn’t just in the game, he changed the game. He opened the door for so many of us, myself and a lot of you out there… So as you continue young actors, carry his torch with pride.”
Shemar and Kristoff became close while starring on the soap opera as brothers. He went on, “Kristoff was my friend. He was my brother. He was my mentor. He was my acting coach. He was my therapist. Rest in peace, keep dancing, and we will never, ever forget you, my brother.”
When the show won the award that he was there to present, Shemar declared, “Kristoff, this is for you baby.”
On Monday, he posted a video from the award ceremony, writing on Instagram, "I will ALWAYS brag about my brother and friend..... love, appreciate, honor, Carry his torch with pride, remember him and smile, and NEVER FORGET..... MR KRISTOFF ST JOHN 🕴🏻."
During a recent appearance on “The Talk,” Shemar opened up on the final text that he had with Kristoff, who died of heart disease worsened by alcohol abuse as well as the effects of ethanol. The text St. John sent him read, "Bro. On the real. I look up to you. What you have accomplished. You were a squeaky clean Lil boy, with stars in your eyes. Now you are the center of an entire solar system. You have survived against all odds. In a business that doesn't want US."
St. John praised his mentee as being "far beyond any black star that has graced TV in the last 50 years...except Denzel on St. Elsewhere. And even he, wasn't the actor, who exuded sex and charisma like you."
The ill-fated actor closed by urging, "Keep pressing. Keep grinding," and signed off with, "You are Shemar."
Moore revealed that St. John handpicked him in 1994 to play his younger brother on "The Young and the Restless," emphasizing, "Without him, I honestly wouldn't be in this business the way that I am — or maybe, not even at all."
After starring on the show for more than 10 years, Shemar found success on primetime TV, starring in “Criminal Minds” and “S.W.A.T.”
In February, Kristoff’s “Young and the Restless” co-star Eric Braeden got emotional about Kristoff’s sudden death, telling “Extra’s” Tanika Ray, “When you lose someone... you go through periods of everything being okay... and then something reminds you.”
Braeden, 77, played Victor Newman opposite Kristoff’s Neil Winters for 27 years. Eric commented, “Kristoff was a hell of a guy, a man’s man, a damn good actor, loved everyone, everyone loved him, the most charming and gregarious co-worker we ever had.”