TV personality Regis Philbin dead at 88

Regis Philbin: Things to know

Television personality Regis Philbin has died at age 88.

His family confirmed the news in a statement, adding that he died of natural causes “one month shy of his 89th birthday.”

“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,” the family said in a statement to People. “We thank his fans and admirers for their incredible support over his 60-year career and ask for privacy as we mourn his loss.”

In 1988, Philbin co-hosted the nationally syndicated daytime show “Live! with Regis and Kathie Lee,” first with Kathie Lee Gifford. Once Gifford left after season 12, he co-hosted with Kelly Ripa, and the show was renamed “Live! with Regis and Kelly.” In 2011, he left and was replaced by Michael Strahan.

Although Philbin and Gifford maintained a strong friendship after her exit from the show, Philbin and Ripa stopped speaking to each other when he left.

“She got very offended when I left,” he told Larry King in 2017. “She thought I was leaving because of her. I was leaving because I was getting older and that wasn’t right for me anymore.”

Beyond daytime, Philbin found more success as the first host of the game show “Who Wants to Be a Millionaire” in 1999. He also hosted the revamped game shows “This Is Your Life” and “Million Dollar Password.” In 2004, he filled in for Dick Clark for ABC’s “Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve” after Clark had a stroke. He hosted the 37th Daytime Emmy Awards in 2010 and throughout his career made cameo appearances in “Mad About You,” “Seinfeld,” “The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air,” “Miss Congeniality 2,” “Shrek the Third” and movies and TV shows.

With multiple successful TV projects under his belt, Philbin set the Guinness World Record for most hours on U.S. television at 16,746.50 hours in 2011.

Philbin was married twice. First to Catherine Faylen from 1958 to 1966. Together they had a daughter, Amy, and a son, Daniel, who died in 2014.

In 1970, Philbin married Joy Philbin. They were parents to daughters J.J. and Joanna.

In later years, Phibin had numerous health problems. In 2007, he had triple bypass surgery. In 2009, he underwent hip replacement surgery. A blood clot in his calf was removed the next year.

Philbin is survived by his wife of 50 years, three daughters and grandchildren.

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