Comedienne Tiffany Haddish turned heads when she walked the 2018 Oscars Red Carpet in traditional African garb.

But what viewers didn’t know at the time was the extremely sentimental reason behind her decision to wear the outfit.

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The comedienne told E! News:

“My father passed away this year and he’s from Eritrea. He told me, ‘One day you’re going to be at the Oscars and when you go, you have to honor your people.’ So I’m wearing an Eritrean, authentic princess dress. And I’m proud of it.”

According to Hello Giggles, Tiffany’s late father, Tsihaye Reda Haddish, was absent for most of Tiffany’s life.

Tiffany said during an appearance on “Celebrity Medium” that she and her father reconnected when she was 27 years old. She explained that she found him living in Philadelphia:

“My whole point to meet my father was just to know genetically what do I have to expect? And where the hell your ass been? Where the hell yo’ ass was at when I was out here living in the streets?”

The now 38-year-old said:

“I reconnected with my dad when I was like 27. I offered to let him come stay with me and let me take care of him and then he disappeared again. Now, he reappeared and he says he wants to come stay with me now. And there’s a part of me that’s like ‘You kinda missed that boat.'”

Tsihaye walked Tiffany down the aisle at her wedding to her now ex-husband and the pair even shared a father-daughter dance— something Tiffany had always dreamed of doing.

Tiffany Haddish/Instagram

She explained on Instagram:

I used to work Bat mitzvahs and weddings and whenever the father and daughter dance happen I would get so jealous because I thought that would never happen for me. Then I met a man that said he would make my dream come true of my father walking down the aisle and dancing with my daddy. My ex-husband did just that. Even though my dad didn’t want me to get married he stood right by my side. I cried so hard when we danced because there I was in my daddy’s arms. He said something to me I dreamed of him saying to me all of my life. He said “Tiffany, you are the most beautiful woman in the world and I am so proud of you. Even when you wrong you are right in my eyes. I am here for you.” That was it I started to ugly cry.

The status of Tiffany’s relationship with her father when he passed away is unclear, but fans applauded her honoring him at the Oscars. Some wrote:

I applaud you for being able to forgive. You are inspiring.

You have honored your father and culture well. You look beautiful!

You’re amazing!

Tiffany’s second outfit of the evening also turned heads. According to E! News, Tiffany presented at the Oscars wearing a white Alexander McQueen dress that she has worn two other times, once at a Hollywood premiere and again on Saturday Night Live:

What do you think of Tiffany’s Oscar looks?

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