Simon Cowell broke down in tears as he recalled the darkest moment of his life, he says ‘you’ll have to give me a minute’

Tran Hanh
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June 11, 2024

Britain’s Got Talent mogul Simon Cowell appeared on Steven Bartlett’s Diary of a CEO podcast this week and broke down in tears as he remembered a tragic loss in his past

Simon Cowell broke down in tears during a recent podcast appearance as he recalled the darkest moment of his life.

The Britain’s Got Talent mogul was chatting to Dragons Den star Steven Bartlett on his Diary of a CEO podcast this week, and had to stop the interview mid-way to have a moment to breathe as he choked back tears. The record label founder was discussing his early success before landing TV shows like Pop Idol and X Factor – when he learned that his dad had sadly died.

Simon explained: “I think someone told my mum, ‘Don’t tell Simon’ [while he was celebrating]. I phoned back and she told me and I thought, ‘Oh my god, I can’t believe it’. Because I genuinely, at that point in my life, I just believed my parents are gonna live forever. It was bad. It was tough.

“However, I do believe in God and I do believe, because the hardest thing when you lose your parents is you can’t even think about them afterwards because it’s too difficult. Everything is. Then after a while, when I have a question in my mind, I do talk to them in my mind, like ‘What would you do?’ And I know what they would say. I really do still believe they’re with me, but that was a very bittersweet moment.”

Simon Cowell
Simon Cowell broke down in tears during a recent interview (Image: @The Diary Of A CEO/YouTube)

Simon confessed: “I would have swapped everything [my success] to have kept my dad around. All the things he taught me over the years… it was the longest trip home from America, that flight. It was bad. He was very wise and he did give me a good steer.

“He only lost his temper with me once. He never hit me, nothing like that, but he raised his voice once at me and that was enough. When he was angry at you, you knew it. I think he would have got a real kick from seeing me on a TV show.”

Simon’s dad died before he got to see his son succeed at TV work, but his mum lived until shortly after the birth of Simon’s son Eric. He shares the tot with fiancée Lauren Silverman.

Simon Cowell
The star said he ‘needed a minute’ (Image: @The Diary Of A CEO/YouTube)

The X Factor head judge went on to say: “It was no question in my mind – losing both my parents was the hardest thing that ever happened to me. I can sit here and look you in the eye and say that. Everyone says when you lose them, ‘In time it’ll get better’, and you think, ‘No, it won’t’.

“The truth is it does, as long as you believe and you have to believe that their presence is still there with you. I do genuinely believe that with my mum and dad.” But the topic evidently proved too much for Simon, as he took a deep breath and told Steven: “Oh gosh, you’ll have to give me a minute.”

Simon Cowell
Simon’s mum met his son Eric before she died (Image: Getty Images)

The star then added: “My mum started to get dementia but fortunately saw Eric – she bought him this brown blanket and he still has it. Literally everything is about the brown blanket.

“When he was about two or three, after she passed away, he looked up at the sky one night and said, ‘I’m thinking about grandpa Eric and Julie’, and just the way he said it… That’s when I genuinely started to believe they are still somehow with us.”

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