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Watch Joan Rivers' Scrappy, Tear-Jerking Emmys Speech

When she won a Daytime Emmy for Outstanding Talk Show Host in 1990, Rivers dedicated the award to her husband Edgar, who committed suicide a few years earlier. The comedian died Thursday at age 81.

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"It it was my husband Edgar Rosenberg who always said, 'You can turn things around.'"

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After making a joke about how she "always had a fantasy, you know, as a child that I would win one of these," but didn't think she would "be this old when the fantasy came true," Rivers gave an emotional speech, thanking her daughter Melissa and noting the past few years for them had been "very difficult" after Fox fired her from her late-night talk show and her husband killed himself.

"Two years ago I couldn’t get a job in this business. I could not get a job. My income dropped to one-sixteenth of what it was before I was fired. And people said I wouldn’t work again. And my husband had a breakdown, and it’s so sad that he’s not here, because it was my husband Edgar Rosenberg who always said, 'You can turn things around.' And except for one terrible moment in a hotel room in Philadelphia when he forgot that.

“This is really for him. Because he was with me from the beginning. And I’m so sorry he’s not here today.”

Rivers defeated Phil Donahue, Oprah Winfrey, Sally Jessy Raphael, and "Frugal Gourmet" Jeff Smith.

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