Cory Monteith's mom has fired back at criticism about an Emmy Awards tribute to her late son, insisting he would have been a TV icon had he lived.
They're celebrating this self-inflicted tragedy instead of celebrating the life of my father, who won three Emmys
Ann McGregor has taken aim at beloved TV veteran Jack Klugman's son after he suggested his father would be a better fit for Sunday's (22Sep13) In Memoriam special tribute than Glee star Monteith, who died from a heroin and alcohol overdose in July (13).
Five TV celebrities who passed away in the last 12 months have been selected to receive special mention as part of the somber section of the prizegiving in Los Angeles - but Klugman and Dallas star Larry Hagman have been left off the list.
Instead, Monteith, James Gandolfini, producer Gary David Goldberg, actress Jean Stapleton and funnyman Jonathan Winters will receive the special honors, and Klugman's son Adam let it be known he wasn't happy his dad, who died in December (12), had been left off the list.
He told the Los Angeles Times, "They're celebrating this self-inflicted tragedy instead of celebrating the life of my father, who won three Emmys... Cory Monteith never won an Emmy... Let's call this what it is. They're doing this because they think they're gonna get a younger generation of viewers to watch".
But McGregor insists it is appropriate her son is getting a special tribute at the Emmys.
She tells TMZ.com, "If he had lived 30 more years he would have accomplished much more".
Emmys bosses have also defended their decision to include Monteith, insisting critics will understand why they singled out the Glee star when Jane Lynch takes to the stage at the ceremony and pays tribute to her late friend and co-star.