- Associated Press - Thursday, September 4, 2014

Celebrity colleagues and admirers of Joan Rivers share their reactions Thursday to her death at age 81:


Joan Rivers brought laughter to millions around the world and was proud of her Jewish heritage and a vocal supporter of the State of Israel. We will miss her deeply and we send our heartfelt condolences to her family.” - Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in a statement.

“I’m completely heartbroken by the loss of my beloved Joan. Not only was she my boss, she was and will always be my teacher, therapist, closest friend, inspiration and the only grandmother I ever knew. She was family and I will never forget her. Laughter will be difficult for a while but when I’m sad, lonely or upset all I will have to do is think of Joan and a smile will cross my face. … I will miss you deeply and will always hear your voice in my head saying, ‘My darling get out there and be you!’” - Rivers’ fellow “Fashion Police” panelist Kelly Osbourne in a statement.

“Here’s a woman, a real pioneer for other women looking for careers in stand-up comedy. And talk about guts - she would come out here and sit in this chair and say some things that were unbelievable, just where you would have to swallow pretty hard . but it was hilarious .. The force of her comedy was overpowering.” - Host David Letterman from the taping of Thursday’s “Late Show.”

“Our dear Joan is gone. Knowing her, working with her and enjoying the fun times of life with her was special. She will always be in our hearts. … Joan we will miss you.” - Comedian Don Rickles in a statement.

“A legend, a friend, a mentor, an icon, and wildly funny. One of a kind. RIP …” - Comedian Kathy Griffin in a tweet.

“I never saw someone attack a stage with so much energy. She was a controlled lightning bolt. She was a prolific and unpredictable, joyful joke writer. She loved comedy. She loved the audience. She was a great actress and should have done that more. She loved living and working. She was kind. She was real. She was brave. She was funny and you just wanted to be around her. I looked up to her. I learned from her. I loved her. I liked her. And I already miss her very much.” - Comedian-actor-writer Louis C.K. in a statement.

“What a full life. Every woman in comedy is indebted to her. She was there at the beginning and funny to the end. RIP Joan” - Comedian-actress-writer Amy Poehler in a statement.

“No one loved life, laughter, and a good time more than Joan. We would have dinner and laugh and gossip and I always left the table smiling. She was a brassy, often outrageous, and hilarious performer who made millions laugh. In private, she was the picture of elegance and class. I will miss her.” - Newswoman Barbara Walters in a statement.

“My heart is torn in half. She wasn’t done.” - Comedian Sarah Silverman in a tweet.

Joan Rivers was a pioneer in the entertainment industry. Fearless, tireless and brilliantly funny. I will forever look up to Joan. She was a true friend.” - Talk-show host Kelly Ripa in a statement.

“She was one of the best comedy guests Johnny (Carson) ever had.” - Comedian-director David Steinberg in a statement.

Joan Rivers will always be a pioneer. She paved the way for a lot of comedians. I’m very sad she’s gone.” - Comedian-host Ellen DeGeneres in a tweet.

“First Robin (Williams). Now Joan. The world just became a less funny place. RIP Joan Rivers.” - Comedian Gilbert Gottfried in a tweet.

“RIP GODDESS: Hail Hail, a GENIUS has vacated this realm: Joan Rivers has died.” - Comedian Roseanne Barr in a tweet.

“We lost a great one in Joan Rivers - she was funny all the way to the end.” - Talk-show host Jimmy Kimmel in a tweet.

“Watching Joan Rivers do standup at age 81 was incredible: athletic, jaw-dropping, terrifying, essential. It never stopped. Neither will she.” - Actress-director-writer Lena Dunham in a tweet.

“I was lucky enough to have Joan rivers critique my style! I will miss seeing and most importantly hearing her humor on TV!” - Auto-racing star Danica Patrick in a tweet.

“Goodbye my friend Joan Rivers. You were a huge part of my professional life and you brightened up the horizon with your Chutzpah! Sad!” - Musician Boy George in a tweet.

“She was trailblazing. Hysterical. Thoughtful. We’ll miss you immensely Joan.” - Host-producer Ryan Seacrest in a tweet.

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