Kathryn Limbaugh Joins Clay and Buck to Remember Rush
17 Feb 2022
RUSH: I have to tell you, you know, a lot of people get do-overs. A lot of people have false starts. I had my share. Got this one right. Thank. God. Got this one right. She’s just been a gigantic pillar of strength and just does everything imaginable and possible to keep things as upbeat and positive as they can be. And I know it’s hard on her. It’s gotta be hard. It’s gotta be devastating on her. But I never see that. She always hides it. She’s always put me first anyway, but in the last six months or so, I haven’t known what being put first is until these past six months. Truly blessed by God with her in my life.
BUCK: That was Rush, the greatest radio host of all time, speaking about his rock — the person always there for him, always supporting him — his wife, Kathryn Limbaugh. And we are very honored as we are paying homage to Rush today on the one-year anniversary of his passing to have Kathryn Limbaugh joining us right now. Kathryn, thank you so much.
KATHRYN: Thank you very much. I just heard Rush’s voice there, and he said that I always am able to hide it. I’m not for sure I’m gonna be able to hide it after that, but I will try my best here.
BUCK: Well, we really appreciate you being with us and everyone listening, all of Rush’s friends, really — his extended family, his listeners for decades across the country — really want to hear from you. We knew that today. They would want to hear from you. So, thank you for making the time for us. And we get so many emails from people asking — EIB listeners for years, Kathryn, asking — first off, how are you doing?
KATHRYN: Well, thank you for asking. I’m doing as well as can be expected. It’s been a very, very challenging year, as it has been for everyone listening. We lost an incredible hero, an incredible patriot, an American icon that cannot be replaced in any way. So I think it’s been difficult. But I have been comforted by so many wonderful prayers from this audience, from people all over the world who have sent wonderful gifts and letters and prayers, and I’m deeply, deeply grateful for that. They certainly have helped through a very challenging time.
CLAY: Kathryn, it’s an honor for Buck and I to get to sit in this chair where we are every single day getting to hopefully continue your husband’s legacy, and I know that it’s been a difficult year for you, but you have been working as hard as you can to help to preserve Rush’s legacy and grow it in so many fantastic ways. What exactly are you doing, and how can everyone out there listening help that to continue to flourish?
KATHRYN: Well, thank you so much. As I said, Rush was just an incredible pioneer, an incredible American patriot that will never, ever be forgotten. But I wanted his legacy to continue in the best way that we possibly can, and that is to live out his ideals. And the best way that I can think of is to provide scholarships to younger people who have worked incredibly hard, who share a lot of same values that Rush represented, and we created a new website. It’s called OfficialRushLimbaugh.com.
There, there’s a lot of tributes to Rush, there’s information about the scholarships. We just recently awarded the first-ever Rush Limbaugh Scholarship. It’s an American Patriot Scholarship — which, of course, is fitting — to an incredible young man who just represented Rush so well. He was formerly in the military. He had been through a lot of challenges in his life, and he said that he wants to carry on what Rush stood for. And that, to us, just stood out.
And awarded the first-ever scholarship. We plan to award many more throughout the upcoming year and years. We want to be sure that Rush is always revered in the highest possible light, that he remains America’s Winston Churchill, as we all know he is. And just the incredible leader. He taught us all so much that it’s up to us to carry forward and to continue in our lives as best we possibly can.
BUCK: Kathryn, Rush was known for his insight and prescience, certainly among his listeners, but just across the media landscape, the conservative media landscape. Everyone said, “Wow. Rush, he saw it coming.” Are there certain things that over the last year or so just as a person who knew him best had to say to yourself, “Rush called it; he knew it was coming”?
KATHRYN: Oh, he absolutely did. He was an incredible genius that way. He could tell us what was gonna happen in the weeks and months ahead. I think that he very much thought that this was how the country was probably going to go under, unfortunately, Biden’s presidency. He obviously very much wanted President Trump to be in office. I know he was deeply disappointed and upset with everything that happened in January while he was still here to be a part of it and see it.
But he knew that the country was gonna take a turn, the policies were going to go south, we were going to be facing harder days. He predicted and knew that. He could tell you well in advance the economy was going to go down as it has, the borders were gonna go into a complete mess, our strength in the world was going to take a hit.
He would have said all of those things and more. And the most important thing is he would have brought an element of humor to it. He would have made us all laugh about the fact that the car was somewhat driving off the cliff (laughs) and now he inevitably is up in heaven looking down and saying, “Please, get us back on the right course.”
CLAY: Kathryn, you heard Rush talk about how much you meant for him. I think people would probably like to hear, when did you guys first meet and when did you think to yourself, “This is the guy that I want to be with?” Obviously, people experienced so much of him on the radio. But his personality went far beyond what he said on the radio every day. For people out there, what was that experience like in your private lives, and what was that moment where you knew, “This is the guy”?
KATHRYN: Sure. Rush and I met almost 20 years ago. We were first friends for several years, many years. Probably in his mind, he would say an eternity (laughing) because I implemented the buddy rule early on, and the reason for that was because he loved referring to The Buddy Rules and pretty much telling everybody about it. (laughs) But the reason for that is I wanted him to get to know me and I wanted to get to know him without any other clouding.
So in the early days, we were friends first. We became incredible partners. I think when I first learned of Rush, of course, I heard a lot that was said in the mainstream media, the negative connotation of him or the reputation of him that was said in the mainstream media. And as I got to know him personally, as I got to listen to his program day in, day out, as we became such close friends, I knew and lived with the greatest man that I could ever have imagined.
He was an incredible gentleman. He was incredibly funny. He pushed me to be the best possible version of myself, and I hope that I did that for him. We would talk for a lot of time in the evening well after the show and when he had a few minutes of not being involved with show prep and we would talk about the events of the day. I don’t think there’s anyone that I will ever speak to again that had that kind of genius to be able to comment on everything, everywhere.
He had an incredible mind. He, as I said before, made me laugh. I think early on I just knew how huge a heart he had, how generous he was, how he was just one of a kind. And he made an incredible impression on me from the very first day we met, and that just grew. I actually think this final year was his best year. He was the best version of himself. He was even stronger than he ever had been.
He was more in touch with everything around him that mattered, namely, our relationship and his relationship with his audience, with the radio program — and, of course, the country. But I would say I knew early on, but of course I didn’t admit to him (laughs) so we could implement The Buddy Rules for a period of time.
BUCK: Kathryn, we have more questions for you, if that’s all right — and really the audience has more questions ’cause they’ve been reaching out and they want us to check in, see how you’re doing and talk to you more — so can you give us a few more minutes, can we bring you back?
KATHRYN: Of course! Happy to.
BUCK: We’re gonna talk to Kathryn Limbaugh, Rush’s wife, about the legacy of the great man himself. We are remembering him on the one-year anniversary of his passing. We’re gonna come back to that in a moment.
PRESIDENT TRUMP: Rush was a man who had tremendous courage, and he had tremendous principle — and if he believed in something, he’d talk about it. And who had an audience like him?
CLAY: Welcome back in, Clay Travis, Buck Sexton show. We are talking with Rush’s wife, Kathryn Limbaugh. And you just heard former President Donald Trump, 45 himself. We are going to be live at Mar-a-Lago on Tuesday. Kathryn, I think that probably cues up a good opportunity here. What was Rush’s relationship like with President Trump, and what did it mean for President Trump to honor him at the State of the Union like he did?
KATHRYN: I see a lot of similarities between President Trump and Rush. They both didn’t need to do it. They both had lives that, in Rush’s case, he could retire, or President Trump could retire and continue in the business that he was in. But they both saw a larger purpose and a greater purpose, and they were willing to take arrows on behalf of the American people. And I think that they had a very unique bond in that way because they understood each other very well.
They both knew that they were at the tip of the spear in many ways. They both knew that they had to take the slanders and the arrows that were thrown at them in order to achieve the higher purpose. President Trump, off of camera — and not as widely known — he was so incredibly thoughtful throughout Rush’s entire illness. He would call probably more than anyone, including personal family, to check on Rush.
In the evening, after giving a speech somewhere, he would call Rush just to ask how he was doing. He wasn’t looking for feedback on the country. He wasn’t looking to see how he had done on a particular policy. He was just checking in on Rush, and I think — in many respects — they were peers in that regard. I hold President Trump in the highest regard for the honor that he bestowed on Rush.
That Medal of Freedom presentation was second to none. Rush was 100% speechless and touched. He was deeply honored. I said earlier that — to someone earlier that — that was a chance for Rush to see how many people cared for him. To be honored in such a way, so globally by President Trump meant everything to us, and it’s something that I will never forget in all my life.
BUCK: Kathryn, you were a driving force behind the widely acclaimed Rush Revere children’s book series. Are you hearing from young folks eager for you to continue with that? And also, do you have any advice for that next generation of young, up-and-coming conservatives?
KATHRYN: Yes. We hear from young Rush Revere readers all the time, and it’s really a highlight of our days to hear from young patriots all over the country. But we have five books right now. We are thinking about working on Book 6. We’re going to have to think about where Rush Revere is going to time travel to, but there’s a lot of topics going on right now. So I’m sure there’s certainly something that we could talk about in current events or in history.
But the Rush Revere series came about because we wanted to make American history fun and engaging for the younger demographic. Rush had such an incredible ability to speak to people one on one and break down very complex issues. We wanted that to translate into books for children — or young readers. It was really for the fifth-grade reading level, but we hear from people of much younger age and were older. But we wanted to make American history fun.
So through the magic of time travel, Rush Revere and his favorite sidekick horse, Liberty — who is a talking horse — would time travel back to key events in American history, whether it be the Mayflower or the Boston Tea Party or what have you. And they would engage with that particular event. They would talk to incredible patriots like George Washington. They became a part of history. And in that way, it made American history very fun. So, yes, we hear from young readers all over the country all of the time. We definitely want to continue, if we can, and probably will be working on Book 6 here in the in the future.
CLAY: Kathryn, we get a lot of questions from longtime listeners about your animals. We know you had three dogs and a cat. How are they doing?
KATHRYN: (laughing) Yes. This is a very, very important question (laughing) because it’s certainly top importance.
BUCK: But they’re wonderful. They’re our children in many respects. So we had four Old English Sheepdogs, and we had a cat, an Abyssinian cat. Unfortunately, two of our sheepdogs passed away unfortunately this year, and they joined Rush, but we since have gotten a new little sheepadoodle actually named Winston. (laughing)
So all of our dogs have very prominent names in history (laughing) ’cause we thought it was kind of funny just to call out to Winston, for example, and have him come running. (laughing) But they’re all doing very well. Rush loved, loved his cat Allie probably more than anything next to the radio — and perhaps family. But he loved this little cat, and she completely had him wrapped around (laughing) her finger. But they’re all doing well — and of course, we all miss Rush, and she certainly misses Rush a lot.
CLAY: Kathryn, what do you think Rush would want Buck and I to know? Last minute for you, advice for us going forward. What would he want us to know? And thank you for spending the time with us.
KATHRYN: I think he would just want you to do what you’re doing in terms of continuing conservative thought, continuing to have people live their best lives, to remain engaged, to continue to say how important the United States is, how important our Founding Fathers are. I think he would want you to have people actively engaged in politics, to remember November that’s coming up here soon, to remember 2024, and to call them out on things that need to be called out. And I know that you’re trying to do that and carry on in Rush’s honor, and that’s deeply appreciated.
BUCK: Kathryn, thank you so much for the time with us. We appreciate it — and we know that Rush listeners across the country are sending love and hugs to you. Thank you so much.
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