Daughter Melissa said: “My mother’s greatest joy in life was to make people laugh…I know her final wish would be that we return to laughing soon.”
Report by Paula Antolini
Sept 4, 2014 2:52PM EDT
Legendary comedian since the 1960’s, TV host and fashion critic, Joan Rivers died today at Mt. Sinai hospital in New York City. She was 81 years old.
Melissa Rivers said in her statement, “She passed peacefully at 1:17 p.m. surrounded by family and close friends. My son and I would like to thank the doctors, nurses, and staff of Mount Sinai Hospital for the amazing care they provided for my mother. Cooper and I have found ourselves humbled by the outpouring of love, support, and prayers we have received from around the world. They have been heard and appreciated.”
Rivers had been undergoing surgery on her vocal chords at Yorkville Endoscopy on East 93rd Street, on August 28, 2014, when she stopped breathing and was rushed to the hospital. Her daughter Melissa Rivers immediately flew to New York from Los Angeles, CA, to be by her side.
Joan Rivers remained in a medically induced coma in the intensive care unit (ICU) on life support and was eventually moved to a private room when her condition was more stable.
Melissa stated, “My mother’s greatest joy in life was to make people laugh. Although that is difficult to do right now, I know her final wish would be that we return to laughing soon.”
Twitter is mourning the death of this legendary comedian:
Donald J. Trump: “Joan Rivers @Joan_Rivers was an amazing woman and a great friend. Her energy and talent were boundless. She will be greatly missed.”
Sharon Osbourne: “We’ve lost a true legend today and an amazing woman – a pioneer. She opened up the arena for women in comedy….My heart goes out to Melissa & her son Edgar Cooper. Love and respect from the Osbourne family to you both.”
Whoopi Goldberg: “My friend Joan Rivers has passed away once again to quote Billy Crystal… There are no words. Bon Voyage Joan”
Bette Midler: “Joan Rivers has died. What a sad ending to a brilliant and tragi-comic life; one of the bravest, and funniest of all.”
Roseanne Barr: “RIP GODDESS: Hail Hail, a GENIUS has vacated this realm: Joan Rivers has died.”
Larry King: “.@Joan_Rivers was a dear & wonderful friend who I’ve known for 45yrs. Great guest, pal, comedian & mother. We will never see her likes again”
Kathy Griffin: “A legend, a friend, a mentor, an icon, and wildly funny. One of a kind. RIP #JoanRivers @joan_rivers”
Ricky Gervais: “RIP the mighty Joan Rivers. Funny & fearless. Truly one of a kind.”