Comedienne Phyllis Diller dies

The veteran star, who is credited with paving the way for female comediennes, passed away in her sleep at her Los Angeles home on Monday (20Aug12), months after falling and injuring her wrist and hip, reports

Born in Ohio, Diller enjoyed a career spanning five decades, breaking into radio and TV in 1952.

She began performing stand-up and co-starred with U.S. TV legend Bob Hope in a variety of TV specials and films such as Boy, Did I Get a Wrong Number! and The Private Navy of Sgt. O’Farrell.

Known for her witty wisecracks and her unusual, signature laugh, Diller made regular appearances on popular comedy show Rowan and Martin’s Laugh-In and carved out a movie career for herself with roles in 1961’s Splendor in the Grass and 1967 Mad Monster Party.

She also landed her own variety show, The Beautiful Phyllis Diller Show in 1968, and went on to voice the character of the Queen in A Bug’s Life and Peter Griffin’s mother, Thelma, in a 2006 episode of Family Guy.

She also starred on Broadway in a 1969 production of the musical Hello, Dolly!.