Joan Rivers Passes Away at 81

Joan Rivers Passes Away at 81
Joan Rivers (Getty)

Iconic comedienne Joan Rivers has passed away at the age of 81.

Daughter Melissa Rivers broke the sad news in a written statement on Thursday. "It is with great sadness that I announce the death of my mother, Joan Rivers. She passed peacefully at 1:17pm 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."

Rivers added, "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. 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."

Joan Rivers, who was busy critiquing the fashions of celebrities on E!'s Fashion Police as recently as late last month, suffered cardiac arrest during vocal cord surgery in New York City. She was rushed to the hospital and put on life support, but never recovered.

The comedienne began her long career in the 1960s with appearances on The Ed Sullivan Show and Johnny Carson's Tonight Show. She eventually became Carson's permanent guest host before leaving the host her own show, The Late Show Starring Joan Rivers, which only lasted for one season.

In later years, Rivers became synonymous with Fashion Police, and her acerbic wit and takedowns of celebrity fashion foibles were a staple of every award show. She also starred with her daughter Melissa on the TV docudrama Tears and Laugher: The Joan and Melissa Rivers Story and the WEtv reality show Joan & Melissa: Joan Knows Best?, and had a popular line of QVC products.

Joan Rivers Passes Away at 81
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She was known for critiquing celebrity fashion, but Joan was quite the fashionista in her own right.
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