Beloved television host Regis Philbin, who became synonymous with Live! with Regis and Kathie Lee and later Live! with Regis and Kelly, has died at the age of 88. The star passed away on July 24th, and his family shared a statement on his passing to PEOPLE. The statement explained that the cause of death was natural causes and that he passed a month before his 89th birthday. They also thanked all of Philbin's fans and admirers for all the support over his 60-year career and asked for privacy during this difficult time. No funeral announcements were made, but you can read their statement in its entirety below.
"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 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," the statement read.
Philbin is survived by his daughters J.J. Philbin, Joanna Philbin, and Amy Philbin, and our thoughts are with the family at this difficult time.
Philbin became a household name in 1988 when he became host of Live! with Regis and Kathie Lee, which he hosted for 15 years alongside Kathie Lee Gifford. Gifford would leave after 15 years, and that paved the way for a new cohost entering the show, which would be Kelly Ripa.
Philbin would be the constant and created an entirely new tag team with Ripa in the newly named Live! with Regis and Kelly in 2001. He would continue to host until 2011 when he decided to step away after 23 years.
During all that he would also be the first host of Who Wants to Be A Millionaire, which he would host from 1999 to 2002. Philbin leaves behind a wonderful television legacy, and our thoughts are with his friends and family.