Jane Lynch was "honoured" to pay tribute to Cory Monteith at the 65th annual Emmy Awards last night (22.09.13).
The 53-year-old actress gave a speech to remember her 'Glee' co-star - who died earlier this year from a heroin overdose - and she has praised him as a big reason for the show's success.
She told E! News: "I was honoured to be the one that they asked to remember Cory to the rest of the country.
"There's a whole generation of kids whose lives have been enriched, and I'm really grateful to our show for that, and Finn Hudson and his openheartedness and inclusiveness is a big reason why kids love our show so much, and he's gone."
The decision to pay tribute to him at the event had previously been criticised by the son of late 'Odd Couple' actor Jack Klugman, who believed his father was more deserving of the honour.
He recently said: "They're celebrating this self-inflicted tragedy instead of celebrating the life of my father, who won three Emmys.... Cory Monteith never won an Emmy."
However, Jane has now defended Cory, insisting he was "as bright a light" in real life as he was on screen as Finn Hudson.
She added: "I think it's important for everybody to know, especially those kids, that he was as bright a light as his character."