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Tracy Morgan receives a standing ovation for unexpected Emmys return (VIDEO)

During the 2015 Emmys, one of the biggest surprises didn’t come at the reading of a name on a card.

It wasn’t any of the people receiving a golden trophy. It was none other than Tracy Morgan.

Jimmy Kimmel foretold Morgan’s triumphant return last year, saying he would be back on that stage, and tonight Morgan stepped out in a maroon tuxedo to thunderous applause and made us all cry.

Making a surprise appearance to announce the year’s Outstanding Drama Series, Morgan stood up on stage and told us again that he is still recovering, but he proved he has made tremendous progress by doing what he does best: telling dirty jokes.

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He was even able to poke a little bit of fun at the incident, saying, “I was just ecstatic to learn I wasn’t the one who messed up.”

The appearance marked Morgan’s first Hollywood event since a tragic accident in June 2014, which took the life of his dear friend James “Jimmy Mack” McNair and put Morgan in a coma.

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And with this appearance, our excitement and anticipation is only doubled as we wait to watch him step back into being a comedian. Morgan will host an early episode of Saturday Night Live. The move is probably strategic as well as cautionary since the SNL stage will be familiar to the actor. Morgan suffered severe brain injuries in the accident, but because he spent nearly a decade on the late-night comedy show, hopefully SNL will be a less daunting task to take on as his first time “back on the job.”

Watch Morgan’s victorious and emotional return:

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Image: John Shearer/WireImage/Getty Images

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