will.i.am reunited with teacher who changed his life
- Photo: AR4/WENN1 of 9
- Photo: ETonline2 of 9
- Photo: Photofab/StarTraks3 of 9
- Photo: Steve Granitz/WireImage4 of 9
- Photo: John Hillcoat/Capital Pictures/Retna Ltd.5 of 9
- Photo: ZJJ/LNG/WENN6 of 9
- Photo: NC1/TWT/WENN7 of 9
- Photo: LTA/WENN8 of 9
Will.i.am choked back tears on TV on Thursday as he was reunited with the high school teacher who encouraged him to pursue his musical dreams.
The Black Eyed Peas frontman was a guest on Katie Couric's daytime talk show to promote Ekocycle, his new recycling initiative with beverage giant Coca-Cola, and he opened up about a former health teacher, Ms. Montez, who "changed his life" by giving him the attention and encouragement he needed to launch a career in the spotlight.
Montez was then brought out onstage and will.i.am fought back tears as she praised him for his charity work.
She told the audience, "My best memories of Will is he was just ... he feels like family to me, even after all this time, to me, he just feels like family. I'm proud of everything (he's done), but he's so philanthropic, I just respect that so much."
will.i.am returned the favor by thanking Montez for helping him overcome his childhood shyness and show off his musical talents, because her kindness helped him avoid a life of trouble on the streets of his native East Los Angeles.
He said, "Encouraging a kid, especially when they come from nothing, it goes a long way. You don't know where I would have been if it wasn't for people like Ms. Montez (sic)."
RELATED: Surprising Celebrity Couples
Fergie, Sarah Jessica Parker, and Heidi Klum all get an F on this week's Fashion Offenders.Watch Video »
Diva Double Date
Beyonce and Alicia Keys double date with their famous hubbies on today's Celebs Gone Social.Watch Video »
Where Are They?
See what the cast of "American Beauty" is up to today.Watch Video »
J.Lo's Mini Me
Prince Harry, Jessica Alba and more stars who threw out the first pitch at baseball games.Watch Video »
Like us on Facebook?
UP NEXTMr. Worldwide
From Crowd Ignite