By Craig Martin
World famous comedienne Joan Rivers passed away Thursday at Mount Sinai hospital in New York City following complications from throat surgery. Rivers had been placed on life support since going into cardiac arrest during the procedure, and was in a medically induced coma for much of the week.
There have been many outpourings across social media, as well as via Joan’s daughter, Melissa, with whom she had spent over 20 years covering red carpets appearances on the E! channel and TV Guide Network. Melissa released a statement confirming her mother’s death, “It is with great sadness that I announce the death of my mother, Joan Rivers. 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.” She also added, “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.”
Rivers had been involved in the television world since her first appearance on “The Jack Paar Program” in 1965. She was a writer, producer, television host, and actress famous for her celebrity show “Fashion Police,” as well as many award show red carpet programs. She was also well known for her semi-regular guest position on “The Tonight Show” during Johnny Carson’s run.
Ever the magnet for controversy, Rivers’ comedic material was often deemed as “crossing the line.” Jokes about the Holocaust and making fun of overweight celebrities often caused an uproar, but Rivers never backed down from a statement no matter how controversial. She accepted that her style often gathered a great deal of criticism, but said of the anger caused by her words, “I’ve learned to have absolutely no regrets about any jokes I’ve ever done … You can tune me out, you can click me off, it’s okay. I am not going to bow to political correctness. But you do have to learn, if you want to be a satirist, you can’t be part of the party.”