A television icon has passed away. The family of Regis Philbin confirmed Saturday that the longtime TV host of programs including “Live with Regis and Kelly!” “Regis And Kathie Lee” and “Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?” passed away Friday, July 24.
In a statement, the family said Regis was approaching his 89th birthday and died of natural causes.
“We are deeply saddened to share that our beloved Regis Philbin passed away last night of natural causes, one month shy of his 89th birthday,” his family said in a statement. “His family and friends are forever grateful for the time we got to spend with him – for his warmth, his legendary sense of humor, and his singular ability to make every day into something worth talking about. We thank his fans and admirers for their incredible support over his 60-year career and ask for privacy as we mourn his loss.”
Fellow talk show hosts Ellen DeGeneres, Larry King, and Jimmy Kimmel all expressed their condolences to the Philbin family.
His former “Regis & Kathie Lee” co-host Kathie Lee Gifford also added, “REGIS. There will never be another”…
and Kelly Ripa, another former cohost who now helms “Kelly & Ryan” added a lengthy message on Instagram.
“He was the ultimate class act, bringing his laughter and joy into our homes everyday on Live for more than 23 years. We were beyond lucky to have him as a mentor in our careers and aspire everyday to fill his shoes on the show. We send our deepest love and condolences to his family and hope they can find some comfort in knowing he left the world a better place.”
Michael Strahan, the first initial replacement who took Regis’ place alongside Kelly tweeted out a message expressing his grief.
I’m absolutely heartbroken. Regis was an incredible man who could light up any room. He always made me feel special no matter if I saw him in the studio or ran into him on the street. Legend and Icon aren’t strong enough words to describe him. He will never be forgotten!!”