Legendary, yet controversial talk show host Jerry Springer died on Thursday at his home in Chicago after battling a brief illness, according to his family. He was 79.
Springer was best known for his hit talk show “The Jerry Spring Show,” which debuted in 1991 and ran for 27 years.
Springer’s family issued the following statement after his passing:
“Jerry, born Gerald Norman Springer in London, England on February 13, 1944, immigrated to Queens, New York at the age of four along with his parents and older sister. He graduated from Tulane University and Northwestern University Law School, served in the United States Army Reserves and had a long career in law, politics, journalism and broadcasting. He was known for the Jerry Springer Show, the Judge Jerry Show, the Springer on the Radio Show, Baggage, the Jerry Springer Podcast and until recently even his own 60s folk music radio show in Cincinnati. He also wrote an autobiography and once starred in a movie. But he captured the emotions of the country in 2006 with a shockingly long and humorous run on the popular Dancing With the Stars Show.”
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Before kicking off his lengthy career in the entertainment industry, Springer was the mayor of Cincinnati in 1977 and 1978.
Jene Galvin, a lifelong friend and spokesperson for the family, also issued a statement on Springer’s passing.
He said, “Jerry’s ability to connect with people was at the heart of his success in everything he tried whether that was politics, broadcasting or just joking with people on the street who wanted a photo or a word. He’s irreplaceable and his loss hurts immensely, but memories of his intellect, heart and humor will live on.”