Celebrities Pay Tribute to Regis Philbin, Who Died at 88

Emily Tannenbaum

Regis Philbin, the beloved television host of various programs like Live! With Regis and Kelly and Who Wants to Be a Millionaire, died at the age of 88 on July 24. No cause of death has been specified. 

"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 wrote in a statement to People. "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." 

Philbin raised three daughters, including J.J. and Joanna Philbin, whom he shared with Joy Philbin, his wife of 50 years, and Amy Philbin, from his first marriage to Catherine Faylen. Philbin's only son Daniel died in 2014. 

After getting his start as a writer and host of the 1961 talk show The Regis Philbin Show, the beloved host became best known for hosting two award-winning projects: Live! for 23 years and Who Wants to Be A Millionaire from 1999 to 2002. When Kathie Lee Gifford left the New York City–based ABC morning show after 15 years, Philbin continued to host with Kelly Ripa until retiring from the talk show in 2011.

He was awarded a Daytime Emmy Awards for outstanding talk-show host in 2001, 2011, and 2012, outstanding game show host for Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? in 2001, as well as their Lifetime Achievement Award in 2008. Philbin earned his Hollywood Walk of Fame star in 2003.

The native New Yorker, born in 1931, also hosted Million Dollar Password and the first season of America's Got Talent, made appearances on Rachael Ray, and boasted many other accomplishments in his life.

Of course, tributes to the legendary television personality are already rolling in. “We are beyond saddened to learn about the loss of Regis Philbin. He was the ultimate class act, bringing his laughter and joy into our homes everyday on Live for more than 23 years,” Ripa and Seacrest wrote in an Instagram post. “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.”

“We throw this word around too much but Regis Philbin was a legend,” Bachelor host Chris Harrison wrote on Twitter. “He was a true gentleman I’m glad I got to know and a TV host I admired and was honored to follow. Much like Arnold Palmer everybody has a great ‘Regis’ story, I’m grateful I have mine.”

Rest in peace, Regis Philbin. 

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Originally Appeared on Glamour