Mariska Hargitay Remembers 'Law & Order: SVU' Co-Star Richard Belzer, Shares the Lessons He Taught Her

Mariska Hargitay, the renowned actress known for her role in Law & Order: SVU, recently paid tribute to her late co-star Richard Belzer.

The beloved actor and comedian passed away on February 19 at the age of 78 in his residence in southwest France. Belzer initially appeared as Detective John Munch in the 1990s drama series, Homicide: Life on the Streets, before transitioning to SVU in the same role until his final appearance in 2016.

In a heartfelt interview on Thursday's Today show, Hargitay joined Savannah Guthrie to honor Belzer's memory. With fondness and warmth in her voice, she described him as "a heart and soul." She reminisced about their time together on set, emphasizing how he played an instrumental role in her journey as an actress. "He was family and taught me so much about taking risks and creativity and trust. And he brought so much joy to the set," Hargitay shared with a smile. The actress continued, revealing a softer side to Belzer that many might not have known. t was evident that Belzer's complexity fascinated Hargitay. "He was just such a beautiful and complex [person]. It was such a privilege to know him," she added, a touch of nostalgia in her voice.

After learning about Belzer's passing, Hargitay took to Instagram to express her heartfelt goodbye. Her post was filled with fond memories and gratitude. "Goodbye my dear, dear friend. I will miss you, your unique light, and your singular take on this strange world," she penned. Her words resonated with a deep sense of loss and appreciation. "I feel blessed to have known you and adored you and worked with you, side by side, for so many years," Hargitay's post continued. The emotional tribute concluded with a nod to Belzer's unique humor and spirit. "How lucky the angels are to have you. I can hear them laughing already. I love you so very much, now and forever," she wrote, signifying the eternal bond they shared.

Mariska Hargitay's heartfelt tribute to Richard Belzer not only showcased their deep connection but also shed light on the endearing qualities he possessed.