'The View' co-host Joy Behar shares sweet story about 'dear friend' Regis Philbin

Behar said the story of Philbin sums up "the brilliant talent that he was."

Joy Behar remembered her "dear friend" Regis Philbin on "The View" Monday and shared a personal story about the television legend that she believes summed up the "brilliant talent that he was."

Philbin died at the age of 88 from natural causes on Saturday. After "The View" posted a tribute to Philbin, a frequent guest and friend of the show, Behar replied Sunday morning, saying, "The best of the best. He was one of a kind."

Alongside her fellow co-hosts, Whoopi Goldberg, Sunny Hostin and Meghan McCain, Behar reminisced about Philbin's life and legacy.

"We were very good friends," Behar said. "I have to tell you a story about him that I think pretty much tells you the brilliant talent that he was. I think that people don't realize how incredibly talented he was and what he did."

"I was at Equinox gym. ... [Regis Philbin] used to go there every day. He was always working out and I saw him there and he said to me, 'Behar, Behar, I got nothing!' Meaning that he had no story, he had no anecdote," Behar said. "He just had to go out there and make up something, and so I said, 'You'll think of something, [Regis].'"

Behar continued, saying that when she watched Philbin on TV later on, he shared his story about bumping into her at the gym.

"The guy could make a story out of nothing," Behar said. "It is a challenging thing to do the kind of show that he did, the kind of job that he did where he has to fill time talking about whatever. Not that many people could actually do it."

"He was really an incredible broadcaster, one of the great American broadcasters I think that we have. So, rest in peace, my dear friend. My heart is broken for us and for America," she added.

Hostin met Philibin only "a couple of times," but she said they "really bonded" after he found out that they both graduated from University of Notre Dame.

"He was so in love with our alma mater and he visited often, and was really involved with the theater department there, and was always very, very gracious and very, very kind."

"You would never know he was just such a big star," Hostin added. He acted like an "everyday person."

Although McCain never met Philbin, she reflected on the times her family gathered to watch him host the game show "Who Wants To Be A Millionaire?" She called him "an omnipresent person in all of pop culture."

"He's one of those people like Dick Clark where it's just like, there's just a person that totally consumes American culture who's beloved by all sides. He was a natural entertainer," McCain said. "I don't mean to sound hokey, but they really don't make people like this on television anymore that's just this beloved icon that everybody wants to watch and is endlessly entertaining."

"I'm very, very sad to hear of his passing," McCain said. "My condolences to his family as well, but he will be beloved and remembered forever."

Goldberg said Philbin was a "personal friend" of hers and that she found solace in how he's being acknowledged after his death.

"This is the way I believe he wanted to be remembered, as a really good man, as a real funny guy -- a guy who entertained -- and I adored and I thought he was just the cat's pajamas. So, sail on, Regis. You'll always be in our hearts," Goldberg said. "Give us something to aspire to."

"The View" began its show Monday morning by looking back on Philbin's June 10, 2008, appearance on the show, during which he poked fun at Goldberg and Behar.

He also spoke with the Emmy award-winning daytime talk show's former co-host and founder Barbara Walters about receiving a lifetime achievement award. Philbin won six daytime Emmys and received a Lifetime Achievement Award at the awards show in 2008.

"It's somebody like Barbara Walters who should be receiving these awards. I've been around long enough to know some of the giants and to appreciate the talent," he said.

When Walters insisted that he was a giant in media, he replied, "I don't feel like I am, and I feel a little bit funny about receiving this award."

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