NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) – Joan Rivers died Thursday, a week after going into cardiac arrest during an outpatient procedure in Manhattan, the comedian’s daughter said in a statement.
“It is with great sadness that I announce the death of my mother, Joan Rivers,” Melissa Rivers said in the statement. “She passed peacefully at 1:17pm surrounded by family and close friends. My son and I would like to thank the doctors, nurses, and staff of Mount Sinai Hospital for the amazing care they provided for my mother. Cooper and I have found ourselves humbled by the outpouring of love, support, and prayers we have received from around the world. They have been heard and appreciated.
“My mother’s greatest joy in life was to make people laugh. Although that is difficult to do right now, I know her final wish would be that we return to laughing soon.
Rivers went into cardiac and respiratory arrest last Thursday while undergoing a vocal cord procedure at a private Upper East Side clinic. She was then rushed toMount Sinai Hospital, where she was placed in a medically induced coma.
The New York state health department is investigating the circumstances surrounding Rivers’ cardiac arrest.
The department is looking into “the whole matter,” spokesman James O’Hare said Thursday. He declined to discuss specifics.
Born and raised in Brooklyn, Rivers has always been on the go — still performing stand-up comedy and recently releasing a new book. She also appears in reality TV shows and runs a jewelry line.
Rivers had spoken the day before the procedure at an employee event at Time Inc. in New York. Spectators there said she had appeared to be well.
She got her first taste of real fame in 1965 as a guest on “The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson.”