We are saddened to report that Joan Rivers has passed away on September 4th, 2014 from complications following surgery. She was 81 years old. Joan Rivers was a brash comedian, a writer, actress and talk show host. Rivers had a career full of ups and downs and yet she fought to remain relevant until the moment of her passing.
Joan Alexandra Rosenberg(born Joan Alexandra Molinsky) was born in New York City to Jewish Russian immigrants. Her parents were physicians and Rivers would go on to graduate from Barnard College with a Bachelor of Arts degree in English literature and anthropology in 1954. Rivers worked various jobs before making it in show business including as a copywriter and fashion consultant. River’s was married to Edgar Rosenberg for 22 years and had a daughter, Melissa. She appeared in stage productions, did the circuit of small New York City clubs and eventually landed a gig on Candid Camera. Rivers also made appearances on The Tonight Show and wrote for several popular television shows.
Rivers had a very particular, biting, style of comedy and her albums did very well. She continued touring her comedy while writing and appearing on Late Night episodes with her mentor Johnny Carson. Eventually Rivers was offered her own Late Night Program on Fox which lasted for only a season. Rivers saw a resurgence her in career in the 2000’s with a hosting gig on E!, appearances on Celebrity Apprentice and Louie while also starting her own podcast In Bed With Joan. The brash style of comedy that she created is now a staple of many television shows, movies and stand-up routines.
Joan Rivers had a great many tribulations in her long and storied life. Rivers was twice married and she battled with bulimia and depression, even considered suicide during several moments of her life. Rivers admitted to many extramarital affairs and battled with her self-esteem. Her Late Night talk show on Fox also precipitated many disasters. Her close friendship with Johnny Carson ended when she became his Late Night competitor. He never spoke to her past 1986. After the cancellation of her Late Night talk show, Edgar Rosenberg committed suicide.
My mother’s greatest joy in life was to make people laugh
Rivers was hospitalized in New York on Aug. 28 after she stopped breathing during a surgical procedure on her vocal cords and suffered cardiac arrest. The New York state health department is investigating the circumstances surrounding her cardiac arrest during the outpatient procedure at an endoscopy clinic. Rivers will always be remembered for her style, class and good nature. Her daughter Melissa Rivers says of her late mother: “My mother’s greatest joy in life was to make people laugh,”. Our thoughts and hearts go out to the Rivers family. Joan Rivers will be truly missed by the public and anyone who ever knew her. RIP.