'RHONJ': Teresa Giudice Chokes Up Over Feeling 'Like an Orphan' After Father's Death (Exclusive)
By Brice Sander
Teresa Giudice is paying tribute to her late parents on The Real Housewives of New Jersey. In ET's emotional sneak peek at Wednesday’s all-new episode, Teresa starts planning a celebration of life for her father, Giacinto Gorga, who died at the age of 76 in April 2020. The family was unable to hold a large funeral for Giacinto (aka "Nonno") due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. Months later, Teresa is putting together a small party with her cast mates -- brother Joe Gorga and sister-in-law Melissa -- to honor the legacy of her father.
"I didn't want my dad to leave me, but I know he was suffering," Teresa reflects in a confessional. "He couldn’t walk, and that was so hard. That, like, broke my heart. He wouldn’t want to live just laying in a bed."
As Teresa talks, the show cuts to flashback footage of Nonno stepping in as a dad to Teresa's four daughters -- Gia, 20, Gabriella, 17, Milania, 15, and Audriana, 12 -- while their father, Joe Giudice, was away at prison. There are also flashes to Teresa’s mother, Antonia, who died in 2017.
"We made him as happy as he could, but I know he wanted to go be with my mom, you know?" Teresa reflects. "And he was holding on to be with me and my daughters."
"I miss my dad so much," she says, getting teary eyed. "I feel like an orphan now. I feel like I’m all alone, but I’m happy he’s with my mom."
Watch the full moment here:
"I lost my dad [on] April 3," Teresa recalled to ET at the start of the season. "We started filming beginning of June … [and] I was really depressed. I was really sad, I was like, again. I've been through so much."
"I miss them tremendously," she adds, speaking about both of her parents. "It sucks. He missed my mom and he wanted to be with my mom, which I totally understand. And then I do really feel in my heart that my parents brought Louie to me, because before I met Louie, I asked my parents to send me an amazing person. ‘Ma, Papa…’ -- the same street where I asked my parents is the same street where I met Louie on. I swear."
Teresa started dating businessman Luis “Louie” Ruelas late last year after meeting him at the Jersey Shore. To learn more about their relationship, check out the video below. The Real Housewives of New Jersey airs Wednesdays at 9 p.m. ET/PT on Bravo.