Regis Philbin, a longtime and legendary TV host, died on Friday night due to natural causes. His family confirmed the news to PEOPLE with a statement. He was 88 and only one month shy of his 89th birthday. "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," the statement read in part.
When fans heard the news, they mourned the loss of a prominent television personality. Many grew up watching Philbin's popular shows, including Who Wants to Be a Millionaire. They proclaimed that losing Philbin was similar to losing part of their childhood. Others talked about how he was "an effortless host" and a legend in broadcasting. The tributes continued on Saturday as fans and peers alike reacted to the heartbreaking news.
Regis was a legend.
Rest easy boss man. Thanks for the endless hours of professionalism and entertainment. 🗣🗣✊🏻✊🏻✊🏻 pic.twitter.com/kVyXGNzQqM— Pat McAfee (@PatMcAfeeShow) July 25, 2020
Rest easy Regis Philbin. Great time to recycle this video of the greatest moment ever on Who Wants To Be A Millionaire pic.twitter.com/8ZrvUySUD7— Chase Robertson (@chasecar7) July 25, 2020
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I am heartbroken to hear that #regisphilbin died. He was 88 years old. I had the pleasure of working with him for a few years. I learned so much about tv. And I watched how he treated all of us on his staff like we were just as special as his guests. He was amazing! Send love to #joyphilbin and the family. I will miss him #legend
BREAKING: RIP to one of the most talented natural broadcasters ever, the World Record Holder for hours in front of a TV camera, and one my personal favorites to watch and marvel at how he made an hour unscripted each day fresh and compelling #Regis https://t.co/KBFy8YIpLe— Jonathan Hardison (@FOX6Hardison) July 25, 2020
#BREAKING— Bryanna Gallagher (@BGallagherTV) July 25, 2020
Ugh my heart breaks for his family. Regis was so humble, I always enjoyed watching anything he was apart of. My Nan and I never missed an episode of him hosting who wants to be a millionaire.
🙏🏽 My thoughts and prayers are with his family. https://t.co/5gRj4OR9vF
I’ll always remember Regis Philbin and his appearance on Seinfeld.July 25, 2020
This news made me so so sad. I’ve always loved Regis and his energy. From his roots in TV & Radio... his time on AM LA, and on to network and NYC... Regis was always a true Broadcaster, able to do it all. #RIPRegis #Reeeg https://t.co/lrq8PValjU— Tom Durian (@TMJ4Tom) July 25, 2020
RIP Regis Philbin.
Hell of a career and will always remember those wrestler interactions on the show. pic.twitter.com/y5v3Hobwdq— The PAL F L (@Hamanicart617) July 25, 2020
Regis Philbin died ...Throw 2020 away right now pic.twitter.com/P2q0VZCjq3— john (@iam_johnw) July 25, 2020
Imagine holding the Guinness record for most hours on TV, and people never ever getting tired of you.
Few celebs will ever match the likeability of Regis Philbin. https://t.co/emXcSaKoyj— Courtney Theriault (@cspotweet) July 25, 2020
RIP Regis....always entertaining, always a good sport and seemed like an awesome guy
Very few people have had longer careers in Television and very few have seemed more normal and likable https://t.co/u4xmK425jO— Matt Jones (@KySportsRadio) July 25, 2020
damn bro...regis died. loved regis. RIP.— The Last New Yorker (@LyMoula) July 25, 2020
I gotta go upstairs and tell my mom Regis Philbin passed. 😔— ThankABlackWomanToday (@MichelleChisolm) July 25, 2020
I grew up watching Regis as a kid. This loss—like so many this year—really hurts. RIP Regis Philbin. https://t.co/aURiFEJjfo— Christopher Miller (@dutco) July 25, 2020
Omg RIP Regis!!!— Moriah Del Bae (@RiRi_Lova00) July 25, 2020
I grew up watching Regis on Live and Millionaire with my grandmother. He was always on in the house. So, so sad to hear of his passing. He brought joy to so many.— Kelley Moody KCCI (@KelleyMoodyKCCI) July 25, 2020
Had the extreme pleasure of working with Regis Philbin several times. Pro’s pro.— John McDermott aka “Johnny Mac” (@mcdradio) July 25, 2020