Funeral of Joan Rivers held in New York

Comedian said she wanted ‘a huge showbiz affair with lights, camera, action’

A host of stars have attended the funeral of American comedian Joan Rivers, giving her the send-off she had asked for.

The 81-year-old died last Thursday and had written in her 2012 book I Hate Everyone ... Starting With Me that she wanted “a huge showbiz affair with lights, cameras, action”.

Whoopi Goldberg, Sarah Jessica Parker, Donald Trump, Kathy Griffin and Kelly Osbourne were among the famous faces at the ceremony at Temple Emanu-El in New York.

Crowds of fans were also seen outside the Manhattan synagogue as the star’s friends and family said their final goodbye.


Tributes have pouredin for the talk show host, including from celebrities and fellow comics.

In an interview published in the Sunday Times, Rivers spoke about preparing her daughter Melissa for her death by telling her: “It’s comi-i-i-ing! It’s inevitable.”

She added: “It’s like, God, I’m in my 80s. Nobody, when I die, is going to say, ‘how young?’ They’re going to say she had a great ride.”

The comic, who became almost as well known for her many cosmetic surgery procedures as for her acerbic wit, said she had “no regrets” about going under the knife so many times.

Shortly before her death, the outspoken star got herself into hot water when she was quoted as saying that the Palestinian victims of the Gaza conflict deserved to be dead.

But she told the magazine: “For God’s sake, for God’s sake. I probably said, ‘If you don’t listen and if you don’t get out when they warn you, then you’re going to die.‘ You deserve to die if you’re that stupid.”

Rivers was a trailblazer for all comics, but especially for women.

The raspy-voiced blonde with the brash New York accent was a TV talk show host, actress, a fashion critic, and she sold a line of jewellery.

Rivers had been hospitalised since August 28th when she went into cardiac arrest during a routine procedure at a doctor’s office.

The New York state health department is investigating the circumstances.

In her book, Rivers joked that dying of natural causes was boring. “It’s the grand finale, act three, the eleven o’clock number - make it count. If you’re going to die, die interesting! Is there anything worse than a boring death? I think not.”