Regis Philbin, longtime television host, dies at 88

Regis Philbin, longtime television host, dies at 88

Regis Philbin, beloved by television audiences worldwide and called "the hardest working man in show business", has died at age 88.

He died of natural causes, said a family statement to People magazine.

Regis Philbin and Kathie Lee Gifford kid around for the camera during a studio session. The pair later had two children together, Joanna and Jennifer.

Philbin began his career as a TV host in San Diego, then became a writer on The Joey Bishop Show, then served as the host of a talk show, The Unknown.

'We thank his fans and admirers for their incredible support over his 60-year career and ask for privacy as we mourn his loss'.

Talk show host Jimmy Kimmel tweeted: "Regis was a great broadcaster, a good friend and a tremendous amount of fun". He moved to NY in 1983 to host The Morning Show, which was renamed three years later as Live! with Regis and Kathie Lee. With Regis and Kelly.

His death prompted a flurry of tributes from celebrities on Twitter, including a paean from President Trump.

President Donald Trump tweeted his condolences, calling Philbin "one of the greats". "Holds the record for 'most live television", and he did it well. "We will miss you Regis".

His first job was a page on The Tonight Show, hosted by Steve Allan, back in 1955.

It wasn't just talk shows, it was game shows where Philbin shined as well. By 1988, the show would become nationally syndicated and be titled Live! with Regis and Kathie Lee. Finally, despite his retirement, he joined NBC's Today as a contributor in 2015 where he reunited with Kathie Lee Gifford.

Philbin was proud of where he went to college as he welcomed Lou Holtz, Tyrone Willingham and Charlie Weis all to "Live!" at various different times.

"Live! with Regis and Kelly" aired until 2011.

He said his No. 1 career regret was that he had worked so many unheralded years on local programs in Los Angeles and NY before getting national exposure in 1988.

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