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Comedian Joan Rivers dies at 81

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MUMBAI: The Iconic comedian and a master of one-liners Joan Rivers, with a career of five decades in the industry died at the age of 81. A week before her death, Rivers suffered a cardiac arrest and had been on life support at New York's Mount Sinai Hospital.

Informing the media about Rivers’ death, her daughter, Melissa said, “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.”

“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,” she added.

In 2009, Rivers emerged as the winner of NBC's The Celebrity Apprentice and most recently worked as a host of Fashion Police on E! Network.

Mourning her death, her fashion police co-star Kelly Osbourne posted on Facebook, “I'm completely heartbroken by the loss of my beloved Joan. Not only was she my boss, she was and will always be my teacher, therapist, closest friend, inspiration and the only grandmother I ever knew. She was family and I will never forget her. Laughter will be difficult for a while but when I'm sad, lonely or upset all I will have to do is think of Joan and a smile will cross my face. Laughter is what she gave us and laughter is what she would want us to do in remembrance of her.”

Rivers also hosted an online weekly talk show called In Bed with Joan. She frequently performed live stand-up, and had finished the fourth season of Joan & Melissa: Joan Knows Best, the reality show in which she starred with her daughter.

Born in Brooklyn in 1933, Rivers worked in the New York comedy scene alongside Richard Pryor, Bill Cosby, George Carlin and Woody Allen. Her big break came with an appearance on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson in 1965, where she quickly became an audience favourite.

After that she went on to appear on a galaxy of other TV shows, including The Carol Burnett Show and The Ed Sullivan Show.

She was also a prolific humour writer; she wrote the films The Girl Most Likely To... and Rabbit Test. In 1974 she released Having a Baby Can Be A Scream, the first of 12 books including the best-selling The Life and Hard Times of Heidi Abramowitz.

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