Remembering Notre Dame alum Regis Philbin

Published: Jul. 25, 2020 at 11:38 PM EDT
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SOUTH BEND, Ind. (WNDU) - Notre Dame alum Regis Philbin died Friday night of natural causes.

He was 88-years-old.

Philbin graduated from the University of Notre Dame in 1953 with a degree in Sociology.

He often returned to South Bend to cheer on the Fighting Irish.

Regis Philbin was a frequent guest on “Countdown to Kickoff” chatting with our late Jeff Jeffers.

In 2002, Philbin brought Larry King to his first Notre Dame football game. The two appeared on “Countdown” for a memorable interview.

As Regis was preparing to leave “Live! with Regis and Kelly” in 2011, he sat down again with Jeffers to discuss how Notre Dame felt like heaven to him.

“There’s nothing like it Jeff,” Philbin said. “Nothing like it. You know you work in the heart of New York City with all of the hustle and bustle and all of the sirens and everything else. You come back to Notre Dame. I swear to you, I don’t want to get dramatic about this but it’s almost like entering heaven.”

Notre Dame President Rev. John I. Jenkins is remembering Philbin.

“Regis regaled millions on air through the years, oftentimes sharing a passionate love for his alma mater with viewers,” Rev. Jenkins said. “He will be remembered at Notre Dame for his unfailing support for the University and its mission, including the Philbin Studio Theater in our performing arts center. He likewise was generous with his time and talent in support of South Bend’s Center for the Homeless and other worthy causes. Our prayers are with his wife, Joy, and their daughters and Notre Dame alumnae Joanna and J.J.”

Notre Dame Athletics released the following statement on Twitter.

“We mourn the loss of Regis Philbin ’53, who shared his love of our University and our student-athletes with the world,” the statement said. “We lift our prayers for his wife, Joy, and his daughters, Joanna and J.J., as we join them in celebrating his life.”

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