Joan Rivers, the fantastic acid-tongued comedian, died Thursday. She was 81.
Rivers, had been on life support in Mount Sinai Hospital since having a cardiac arrest in New York last week.
In a statement, her daughter Melissa said she died surrounded by family and friends.
“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.”
The actress and stand-up comedian is well known for her legendary put-downs. She had insults ready for all races, genders and creeds.
She had more recently turned her razor-sharp tongue on the red carpet’s worst dressed celebrities, hosting the E! network’s Fashion Police.
Rivers never mellowed during her half-century-long career. She moved from longtime targets such as the weight problems of Elizabeth Taylor, to newer foes such as Miley Cyrus.
“I have never wanted to be a day less than I am. People say, ‘I wish I were 30 again.’ Nahhh! I’m very happy HERE. It’s great. It gets better and better. And then, of course, we die,”
No performer worked harder, was more resilient or tenacious. She never stopped writing, testing and fine-tuning her jokes. However, she didn’t just fire her barbs at others, she was always prepared to joke about herself, and in particular her plastic surgery.
In 2010, she tweeted a joke about her death, saying: With all the plastic surgery I’ve had I’m worried that when I die, God won’t recognize me!
Shortly after her death was announced, tributes poured in from the world of entertainment.
Joan Rivers will always be a pioneer. She paved the way for a lot of comedians. I’m very sad she’s gone. pic.twitter.com/i1uE9fyHMh
— Ellen DeGeneres (@TheEllenShow) September 4, 2014