Jono takes a moment to pay tribute to a close friend

Last night Jono paid a tearful tribute to a friend who took his own life after a battle with mental illness.

At the close of Thursday night's TV show, Jono and his partner Ben turned away from comedy in addressing the tragedy.

The heartfelt message drew a strong response on social media, with viewers praising the boys for taking the time, to pay tribute to his close mate and raise the conversation about mental illness.

If you feel you need help dealing with depression or a difficult time in your life, call Lifeline on 0800 543 354 or the Suicide Crisis Helpline on 0508 828 865(0508 TAUTOKO). Both are available 24/7.