Joan Rivers, a pioneer for women in stand-up comedy and television, has died, her daughter confirmed. She was 81.

Myjourney_Jr

Rivers died at 1:17 p.m. ET Thursday in New York surrounded by family and friends.

“My mother’s greatest joy in life was to make people laugh,” Melissa Rivers said. “Although that is difficult to do right now, I know her final wish would be that we return to laughing soon.”

Joan Rivers
The author/reality star/fashion critic was hospitalized on Aug. 28 when she suffered cardiac arrest after her breathing stopped during vocal cord surgery at a Manhattan clinic. For days, Rivers’ condition was touch and go, as her daughter, Melissa Rivers, provided periodic updates on her mother’s “serious condition, noting how family and friends were keeping their “fingers crossed.”

On Wednesday, Rivers was moved out of intensive care and was being “kept comfortable.”

From Carson’s couch to the ice bucket challenge, Rivers spent a half century in front of the cameras using the signature catch phrase: “Can we talk?” Celebrities…

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