Regis Philbin‘s longtime morning co-host and dear friend Kelly Ripa is addressing the star’s death. Taking to social media moments after the news broke on Saturday, July 25, the “Live with Kelly and Ryan” host paid tribute to the fallen star. As The Blast reported, Regis Philbin died at age 88. His family released a statement, revealing he passed on Friday, July 24 of “natural causes.” However, TMZ is reporting he died of a heart attack on early this morning.
Their source first claimed the heart attack occurred at his Manhattan, New York home and now, they say it could have been in Connecticut but the family’s statement does not mention anything about a heart attack.
Addressing Regis Philbin’s unexpected passing, Kelly Ripa shared a photo with the beloved former co-host and Ryan Seacrest, who has sat by Ripa’s side on the fan favorite morning show since 2017. The trio is seen smiling alongside Mickey Mouse in a Santa outfit.
Scroll to see Kelly Ripa’s heartfelt tribute.
“We are beyond saddened to learn about the loss of Regis Philbin,” Kelly Ripa began her touching tribute. “He was the ultimate class act, bringing his laughter and joy into our homes everyday on Live for more than 23 years.”
“We were beyond lucky to have him as a mentor in our careers and aspire everyday to fill his shoes on the show,” she added before sending condolences to his family. “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.”
Regis Philbin’s family spoke out to PEOPLE, giving them a statement announcing the retired host’s death. “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,” they stated.
“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,” they added. Regis Philbin is survived by his wife of 50 years, Joy.