TV host Regis Philbin buried at Notre Dame, his alma mater

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FILE – In this Nov. 18, 2011 file photo, Regis Philbin appears on his farewell episode of “Live! with Regis and Kelly”, in New York. Philbin, the genial host who shared his life with television viewers over morning coffee for decades and helped himself and some fans strike it rich with the game show β€œWho Wants to Be a Millionaire,” has died on Friday, July 24, 2020. (AP Photo/Charles Sykes, File)

SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) β€” Television host Regis Philbin, who died last week at 88, has been buried at the University of Notre Dame following a private funeral service at his alma mater, a school spokesman said.

Philbin was buried Wednesday at Cedar Grove Cemetery on the northern Indiana Catholic school’s campus after a private service at the school’s Basilica of the Sacred Heart.

β€œThe Philbin family wanted to bring Regis back to the place he loved so much for a private funeral and burial. That occurred on Wednesday, and he is now resting in peace at Notre Dame,” school spokesman Dennis Brown said in an email.

The genial television host and personality graduated from Notre Dame in 1953 and was an enthusiastic alum, often returning to the South Bend campus for football games, pep rallies, banquets, concerts and other events, the South Bend Tribune reported.

In 2001, he gave $2.75 million to the school to create the Philbin Studio Theatre, meant for laboratory and performance-arts productions, at its DeBartolo Performing Arts Center.

School president the Rev. John Jenkins praised Philbin for his commitment to the school in a statement this week, saying that β€œRegis regaled millions on air through the years, oftentimes sharing a passionate love for his alma mater with viewers.”

Phibin died of natural causes on July 24, just over a month before his 89th birthday. He retired in 2011 following a long television career that included hosting the syndicated morning shows β€œLive! with Regis and Kathie Lee” from 1985-2000 β€” with co-host Kathie Lee Gifford β€” and β€œLive! with Regis and Kelly”— with Kelly Ripa β€” from 2001 until his retirement.

He had also hosted the game show β€œWho Wants to Be a Millionaire.”

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