“She died peacefully in her sleep with a smile on her face.” said Diller’s manager Milton Suchin, according to The Associated Press.
Diller’s onstage persona was that of a self deprecating eccentric with a distinctive cackling laugh. Her career began in radio in California, quickly moving into television work and taking to the stage in the 1960’s. Diller was still performing stand up during the noughties.
“I’m beyond saddened by the death of Phyllis Diller. We were friends…The only tragedy is that Phyllis Diller was the last from an era that insisted a woman had to look funny in order to be funny…” said comedian Joan Rivers on Twitter. Rivers was one of many female comics influenced by Diller.
Vintage US comedian Don Rickles, who has been performing on stage since the 1950’s said “Phyllis Diller was not only a great comedienne but her memorable teaming with Bob Hope brought female comics to the forefront. Her life was filled with goodness and she deserved the respect she received. She will be missed.”
Flowers have been laid next to the comedian’s star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
Main image: Diller in Los Angeles, 2010 (Getty images)