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Tom Arnold revealed in a recent interview with Howard Stern that, for a time, he was the late Chris Farley’s sober sponsor.
Arnold stopped by Stern’s SiriusXM program Wednesday, where he talked about how close the two were. It was actually Saturday Night Live creator-executive producer Lorne Michaels who asked Arnold to look out for Farley, who had a substance abuse problem that would ultimately kill him in 1997 at the age of 33.
“I was his sponsor for a few years,” Arnold said to a surprised Stern. “Chris was from Wisconsin. I am from Iowa. We’d switch off football games. [We were] very close. He liked to have fun — and he had too much fun. I was very sad when he died.”
Arnold also said Farley was on his way to a 17th rehab stay before he died. “It’s all so frustrating because, at a certain point, he was like, ‘I’m not going to be around Tom because I don’t want him to see.'” Arnold told Stern that he warned the SNL comic-actor that he could not be both obese and abuse drugs, which he said he knew from experience, also being an addict.
On a happier note, Arnold talked about Farley being the best man at his wedding when he married Julie Lynn Champnella in 1995. Farley threw the bachelor party at a strip club and got their group kicked out when he stripped totally naked and went onstage, Arnold recalled.
Watch the segment below.
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