Joan Rivers was declared dead yesterday afternoon after her daughter Melissa Rivers made the heartbreaking decision to take her off life support.
She was surrounded by close family and friends, Melissa Rivers said in a statement.
The “Fashion Police” host, who was staying in a private room at the Mount Sinai Hospital, was dependent on machines to stay alive eight days after going into cardiac and respiratory arrest, sources said. The 81-year-old star’s room was filled with flowers, and her hair and makeup had continued to be done as Melissa Rivers pondered her life-and-death choice. Joan Rivers was “being kept comfortable” in her new room after leaving the intensive care unit Wednesday, her daughter said.
In her final days, Rivers was upgraded to a larger hospital suite “decorated by celebrity wedding planner Preston Bailey with flowers, bows, plants,” according to longtime close pal Cindy Adams. She was covered by a white faux mink blanket, while a CD of the Broadway hit “Oklahoma!” played in her room.
Rivers had been on life support since the weekend and was placed in a medical coma prior to that. EMTs rushed the legendary comic to Mount Sinai last week after she went into cardiac and respiratory arrest during a routine doctor’s visit.
“My mother’s greatest joy in life was to make people laugh,” Melissa Rivers said in a statement. “Although that is difficult to do right now, I know her final wish would be that we return to laughing soon.”
State health officials are now probing the Upper East Side clinic where Rivers became unresponsive during an Aug. 28 medical procedure. “The State Health Department is investigating the matter,” agency spokesman James O’Hare told the Daily News Thursday.